Congregation talks, tosses out words,
pretends to catch them, calls many more.
Words leap from mouth to mouth, talk rises,
falls, words flung out into air as though air
were their only lover. Listen. Sea-sounds,
rushing resonance of histories, hush
in sanctuary before he begins.
Weeping girl, head thrown back, says nothing.
The hall is dead now except for breathing.
Listen to reason, hope, listen for why
and intense no, animal sorrow.
Listen to the hum of preacher’s speech,
the dip down and rise of it, the truth
of the great horned owl with a field mouse.