Who needs a rosary?

Rosary tied to box spring
beneath where my father slept.
God, have mercy on him.
He did not worship You,
but lived You in relationships.

I was taught Papal invincibility
as priests preyed on youth.
They forgave others
behind confessional screens,
required rosaries for penance.

My father,
God rest his soul,
more a father than them.
He didn’t need a rosary,
but many of them did.

Explanation: When I was away in college, I received a phone call from my mother. They’d just had a new mattress and box spring set delivered. And the strangest thing, she said. When they went to remove the old box spring, they found a rosary entwined in the bottom of it. Did I have any idea why it was there?

And then I remembered. When I was in Catholic grade school, learning my catechism, I feared my father wouldn’t go to heaven because he didn’t go to church and he wasn’t a Catholic. So I sneaked into my parents’ bedroom, crawled under their bed and tied a rosary to the boxed spring, on the side of the bed my father slept on. Imagine the indoctrination that happened to make me think that and go to that extreme to save him. I was probably in third or fourth grade when I did this. I just couldn’t understand, I suppose, how such a good man as my father, wouldn’t be allowed in heaven.

Image by Richard Revel from Pixabay

4 thoughts on “Who needs a rosary?

  1. Rob Kistner February 24, 2023 / 1:51 pm

    I don’t know if you know this Lillian I just found out today. Our friend and fellow poet Glenn Butkus passed away last Friday the 17th. I will miss his bold ways. Rest in peace Glenn.🕊

    Liked by 1 person

    • lillian February 24, 2023 / 2:13 pm

      Oh Rob….thank you so much for letting me know. This is such sad news. I can picture Glenn and hear his voice reading aloud on OLN LIVE. And I loved his Western movie scripts with Buck. I was just talking about him with Sanaa, asking if she’d heard from him lately. She used some of his minimalist photos for a prompt and since then, had been in occasional contact with him. I’ll let all the dVerse pubtenders know…So so sad to hear this.


    • navasolanature February 27, 2023 / 7:54 am

      So sorry to hear about Glenn. I do remember him from Dverse. Yes, may he rest in poetic peace perhaps.


  2. navasolanature February 27, 2023 / 7:53 am

    Very interesting Lillian particularly when I read the background to the poem. Yes, what indoctrination! But you knew your father was a good man. Mine too and he was not a believer but I managed to change what was to be read at the funeral, I was quite young then too. Blessed are… he was pure in spirit and a peacemaker!
    Our fathers are in heaven !


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