Is belief, like love, first a touch, a feeling,
an inclination toward rightness?
But I have known—known—myself right so
many times & been so, só wrong.
Is it a mode of dying? Of benediction? 
Acceptance of suffering? 
                                         It is benediction.
I am ill. There is a candle in the dark,
& I am standing at the rim of the candlelight
behind James Hickey. James Hickey
who had a script I would have killed for,
that I sweated to copy—fluent & expressive
in turquoise ink they only tolerated 
for him; whose voice singing “O come,
O come” held a scale of clarity & completion
that was emptiness, self-extinction:
perfect. James Hickey, as thick as muck,
barely able to long divide, or parse, who gave