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Radu Vodă Monastery

Bucharest, Romania

By Randy BakerPublished 5 months ago 1 min read
public domain, retrieved from Wikimedia Commons

Beneath the church at Radu Vodă

are thousands,


perhaps tens of thousands,

of squares of paper


seen through

semi-opaque panels in the floor.


The faithful file in every day, all day,

queuing to venerate the relics


of Saint Nektarios, or to read

their Akathists on bended knees.


Only a thin space separates silence

from murmured prayers and confessions.


The fragrance of heaven lingers,

hanging like clouds in the nave.


A shelf along the north wall

holds two small boxes,


some pencils,

stacks of paper


cut into squares.

The boxes are labeled


“Vii” and “Morti”.

Petitioners print names


onto the papers,

drop them into the boxes,


either “Vii” or “Morti”,

where they await the monks


who will remove them,

to commemorate the souls


whose names they read

as they pray the cycle of the day.


From there, the papers make their way

beneath the floor,


to absorb the scent of incense

and the tears of supplication,


offered in love

by those standing above


in the Radu Vodă Monastery.

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About the Creator

Randy Baker

Poet, author, essayist.

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Comments (2)

  • Geoffrey Philp 4 months ago

    I love this, Randy. Beautiful!

Randy BakerWritten by Randy Baker

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