Pennsylvania poet Stephanie McConnell’s “Palms” is a work of beauty, illuminating Saint Francis of Assisi. A Catholic, Stephanie told The Dewdrop her poetry is deeply influenced by her sense of theology. “There is a tension between order and chaos, desire and having, contentment and despair,” she explained. “I think religion — all religions — are attempts to help us live at these intersections.”
Palms Finally, I found a boy like St. Francis of Assisi-- with a long story and without a sword-- just that white face and those worried, Umbrian eyes. Once, when we walked together, I stood beside him and sensed I could turn slightly and see a whole forest waiting, watching. He was happy to walk through sunlight falling amid leaves like rain, while I talked my ecstatic talk, stomping. I wanted and wanted to be like the woods, a place he would rest in for hours--content, a little dazed. Instead, I was like the heavy black birds that perched on bruised, purple palms. I rushed to his hands when I was called, when I was not called.
Stephanie McConnell is from Lancaster, Pennsylvania.