Archangel, how do you move? Star-slinging, epoch gathering, Undreaming, dream-reading. Bearing the Eternal “Will you?” At what time of day, olamic angel Did you visit the One who in her “Yes” Would become Visitor to comfort the comfortless? Are your wings, Archangel As I imagine them, or as Fra Angelico? Heavy, unruly swans, tethered and ready That quiver and quicken the Lady’s air Or orderly alary rows of coloured quills That, had convent walls allowed, would willingly Reflect, with opalescent joy, the Lighted Word. Did the cool air move, in the house, where you entered? Archangel, Did your wings or breath or mouth Move air, breeze cloth, lift hair, that made her look From book or bowl or dawn-light waiting? And could meandering particles of air Still sanctify this city? Could brush past skin like mine? Did she take a breath? Breathe in? I’ve seen breath end and breath begin Did her lips part, as you started To say the first of the first decade, a chime That would echo through beads of pulsing time A Rose, did she rise, even slightly, politely To welcome the guest, the “Yes” already begun How quick, Archangel, to allay fear? I would hide, and yet long to be near To bury my face in your plumate back Like a child, wild with the earth, tamed by Beauty As I dream to rest my head on her knee Did her eyes widen, before they turned their gaze On banished generations. On one like me? Archangel, how loud the silence? The ellipsis where hung all men’s hopes? When waiting Life waited because of love That won’t demand, but only asks, Listened to lips that sung of lowliness Shaping sounds of salvation, The first of two “fiats”, that echo of love.