Plainchant and polyphony binding the centuries
cease. The lights are extinguished in the choir,
and darkness, ever present in the corners,
steals once more into its ancient space,
tucking itself around the sanctuary like a blanket.

Against the darkness candles nudge,
caressing the pillars with a flickering kiss,
and the spirits of dispossessed departed canons
nestle in the shadows; silent and invisible
they keep their counsel as do the fingered stones,
worn guardians of all the City’s secrets.

Virginia Rounding

Awaiting an Epiphany: Poems for St Bartholomew the Great
Illustration by Anthony New
published by Church House and reproduced with permission
St Peter's Church, Nottingham
Last revised 30th June 1998