Paperback Price: $13.95
Paperback ISBN: 0-914186-73-1

Selected Poem

The Calling

We will spend what's left of our lives
here, in the Mother House.
Removed from village and road,
set inside stone walls overgrown with hedge,
our buildings, gardens, and covered walks
are woven together to form veil after veil
of confinement. In summer
we even welcome the rainshowers
because they keep us still closer
to our rooms. We are taught
that when one arrives at perfect emptiness
one enters the presence of God.
That does not concern me.
I have my reasons to fear God.
so I do not wait on him.
I am content to sit at my window
and breathe the air coming off the garden.
Sometimes after a long period, the silence
inside the soft bell of the tulip's mouth
is so like my own it overwhelms me.
That is all. For me this is home,
this is the house I dreamt of as a child,
the house I waited for years to enter.
So if I should meet you coming up the path
I might say: Wait. Take time
Before you raise your hand to the door
make certain you know
how little there is on the other side.

The Calling

“There is in this collection a real affection for the world and a wisdom in Absher’s contemplation of the beings who inhabit it. His love is an examined love, and so we have the pleasure of listening to his mind and to his heart. The clarity of the writing and the complexity of Absher’s world-view result in a poetry of intelligence and power. I was moved by the beautiful moral tone of these poems.”
—John Skoyles

“The move toward emptiness and simplicity that is the essence of Absher’s poetic discipline is taken up in his verse, a corpus deceptive in its accessibility. Yet his text demands, for its full appreciation, that the reader put all six senses on alert, in order to commune with the spirits his verse has summoned, in order to bear homage, with him, to the fragile treasures of a world otherwise so recklessly misprized.”
—Ruth El Saffar


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