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New robes

Silence
hems the very
dimensions of the room,
gathering it; every object
is still,

yet full
of intention:
cotton, a handwritten
note, a template. Here each tongue is
bitten,

each head
shorn clean; each one
goes about his own task,
clears the bright monastery paths
of snow,

chops crude
vegetables
for soup, unravels the
coarse meterage of a bolt. By
north light

rheumy
eyes and old blades
follow the line; rough hands
smooth the creases – a brother needs
new robes.