Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

The tourists traipse; the sights go by, a blur
of cramped and cobbled streets where faux cafés
and sellers of souvenirs administer
the sacraments of our despairing days.
Four-hundred-year-old churches punctuate
limp sentences of shops that line the ways.
The remnants of the Faith still fascinate,
and sunlight breaks through hedonism’s haze.
We enter in, my bride and I: we find
the windows in a multi-color blaze;
the altar soars before; pipes loom behind.
Outside the world winds down its final phase.
But pendant in the sanctuary’s air,
the God we crucified calls us to prayer.