Enter the hedges of silence

Seeking the elusive depths of the soul

Aiming for the labyrinthine centre

But finding the journey leads outward

In ever-widening circles

Wandering concentrically

With seemingly aimless diversions

Yet constrained by the quest.


Into Carthusian solitude, of life within the portrait,

Up and down with the plane,

Back and forth with the prayers,

This way and that with the rhythms of life

Walking the ambulatory

Exploring meaning,

Exploring life, to the point of death

And disintegration.


Until uninhibited desires break out

With shouts of ecstasy

In the cloistered paths of confinement

And you're expelled, detained, imprisoned

For daring to speak

When they'd have wished you silent,

So join the compline laments

As the sun sets on another order.


The brief hours of sleep bring discovery

Before the morning calls to silent wakening

And the journey from the centre begins

With another walk - the other way

Reverse gear against the clock

Outwards, round and round again

Searching in hope for the exit

And another focus with a wider meaning.


Until the relief of freedom bursts on the wind

Carrying the breath of a rose

And the touch of the herb garden

Purged with hyssop and the sap of unripe walnuts

As the cassock drops for a rucksack and cagoule

Hooded in the white of a modern untamed saint

Who remembers the centre,

Exploring the soul in another maze.


Ittingen, Switzerland

25 June 2003