If your faith could confess, what would it tell you?
Multitudes of multicolored hats coats and shoes bearing the heavy souls of sinners standing filling the piazza thousands and thousands of them all tuned into a single reel of film a single thread a single story worn continuous since the birth of the one the only their savior an oration on the dignity of man the firm the faithful determined to believe they directed their prayers and willful thoughts to him the old man the emblem of all their faith the pillar of an ancient institution holy trinities through all eternity bless us father for we are unworthy
Bless us Father for we have sinned
It was hot in the piazza. The sweat drilling down his brow smudged all the colors of all the people into a puddle painted before his squinting eyes and suddenly he shivered a cold anxious shiver that ran down, all the way down, shocking his body raw, the body that had been slowly, cozily heating itself up in the April sun of Rome. Back home it’s still cool he thought and shut his eyes back into his brain. He pushed with all his might to will himself back home and straight into his cool wooden patio chair the one that swung slowly back and forth in a breeze across his patio and he could feel the fresh eastern wind on his face scraping the sweet scent of newly blooming spring gardens budding trees and he opened his eyes overjoyed but the heat clamped down on him with a hand yet heavier than before. His present reality was too much to bear. They were still there the throngs the masses the gullible sinners standing on the cobblestones ignoring their true boredom fatigue hunger thirst and nausea because they had traveled thousands of kilometers and miles by all modes of transportation available for outrageous prices herded like cattle into airplanes buses cars and trains and rushing along all the roads that had always led to Rome, and all just to say for the rest of their lives I saw the Pope and then forget entirely what it was really like to stand there in the piazza in front of an edifice that had seen more ignominy than ever there were Popes in history. He noticed her standing next to him and he remembered she was the one who had dragged him away from the comfort of his home to this foreign place his wife he remembered she was his wife but he allowed himself to forget at least for now he allowed himself to dream and imagine himself there alone in the midst of these miserable masses his simple chain of thought alone daring to separate from the others, his will alone rising above the downtrodden verses murmured by the papal voice, repeated with low confused and unintelligibly senile breaths, and he thought of the enchanted spires of Budapest the misted streets of Prague the dusty roofs of Morocco the painful lush forests of South America the green eeriness of China the fresh breezes of Alaska and all the places he ever traveled, glorious voyages of his early youth when he was wild single and free
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