I’ve always been incredibly fascinated by the spiritual worlds. I love reading books about spirituality and miracles. I remember the first time my grandmother who prayed her rosary nightly, and loved to say prayers to Mary (Jesus’ Mother in Catholicism and many Christian faiths), told me about miracles that have happened all over the world. I was extremely interested in the story that occurred in the spring and summer of 1916, nine-year-old Lúcia dos Santos and her cousins Francisco and Jacinta Marto were herding sheep at the Cova da Iria near their home village of Aljustrel in the parish of Fátima, Portugal. The children stated the were visited by an apparition of an angel. The three children claimed to have seen the Blessed Virgin Mary in a total of six apparitions between 13 May and 13 October 1917. 2017 marked the 100th anniversary of the apparitions. The oldest girl was at one point given three secrets regarding the future of the world that she was told to hold onto until specific dates. After some newspapers reported that the Virgin Mary had promised a miracle for the last of her apparitions on 13 October, a huge crowd, possibly between 30,000 and 100,000, including reporters and photographers, gathered at Cova da Iria. What happened then became known as the “Miracle of the Sun” People saw the sun reportedly ‘dance’ in the sky. Colors were seen unlike any colors. Pictures taken showed nothing unusual, but thousands witnessed something ‘spectacular.’ It is noted there are some that report witnessing ‘nothing at all.’ Growing up, my grandmother would update me of statues of religious figures ‘shredding tears of water or blood.’ I loved it when she shared these stories. I found myself drawn to stories of miracles and read everything I could get my hands on about them. I am still very much drawn to them. I don’t know if it just has been the negativity of the last few days, but I found. myself reading a book about a woman who sees ‘angels.’ I wrote this poem along time ago, but I always thought about that young girl in Portugal and what it was like for her or for anyone who’s witnessed one of these miracles or had a near death experience or some very ‘holy, unexplained phenomenon,’ to hold that and not shout from the rooftops about what they experienced. The poem focuses on the girl in Fatima and what it must have been like for her. I think in times when the news is dark it helps me to believe in these things, to believe there are people out there who are righteous and holy enough to hold something so perfect. It gives me a sense of comfort and nobody can deny that in trying times a sense of comfort is helpful. It also reminds me of my grandma, who introduced me to these stories, probably hoping they would give me peace and comfort that there is ”good’ in this world. Every time I hear a story about a miracle or read a book about it, I can almost feel her watching over me. It’s like she’s nodding her head reading with me knowing she did a wonderful thing by providing with such a comfort, knowing that there would be times when I would need it.
Sun gyrating in the sky,
Virgin’s weeping bloody tears,
torn tissue reforming. The girl,
the very young girl, down on her knees,
day & night, keeping
the secrets of the world’s only
Virgin mother of a Messiah. Imagine,
holding onto secrets only death,
flowers & kingdoms of birds,
falling feathers and the seasons
might be able to comprehend. Just imagine,
the solemnity of what was said.
At night in the some dialect of eternity,
some spring pond in the park lingo, she
learned of the windless dust bowl days,
the disappearance of honey bees, the hurricanes
and El Nino’s, all the strains
the world’s joints would have to experience
in a future she could not imagine and would not know.
And she kept it.
I sometimes wonder what
kind of secret womb could entomb
such secrets. Years filled with
being pregnant with twins
of miracles to come and doomsday prophecies.
By day, her eyelids blushed with the dew of sleepiness,
she’d wander the streets, break bread with friends,
and they would all say things like,
“you look like spring is within you,
like you have been touched
by a soft breeze we have not felt.”
She would just smile, feeling the rain inside her,
while the rest of the world
grew thirstier in drought.