Catholic Poetry Room
This week’s poem in the Catholic Poetry Room is by Fr. Robert Phelps, O.F.M. Cap.


To be solitary.
To be alone.
To be singled and to pray
with a power that’s not my own.
Untrammeled self-ness, shorn of
the gray overcoat, pockets filled with
irascible pebbles that fall scattered onto
the flimsiness of resolve, and punch
garish holes into the sheerness of
my defenses, my sufficiency. But
my defeat will capture the city.
Because I am alone. Because I am free.
Because I can now see
Him who is singled in me.

Fr. Robert Phelps, O.F.M. Cap. has been a Capuchin friar for 63 years and a priest for almost 55. He served for 26 years in the territory of Guam in the Western Pacific and 14 years in Hawaii. He began to write creatively when on a private retreat in a rain forest near Lahaina, Maui, in 1991. He has one full-length book of poems, In the Hug of a Sun that has Stopped, published by Lion Autumn Music Co.; two chapbooks, Ever, and Point of View, published by Finishing Line Press; and one e-book, Incessancy, published by Book Baby. He lives in a community of friars in Beacon, New York.

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