5:30 A.M. Early Morning Matins
Her imperious demands
slice the morning air.
I’ve only had three hours of sleep.
She doesn’t seem to care.
The young cats all wait patiently.
The dogs are still abed,
but the old cat knows her wants,
and she wants to be fed!
Church bells rise up from the town,
the priest’s demanding voice
calls the village folks to church
and they have little choice
but to go to laud the virgin,
for this is her holy week.
Old women crawl upon their knees,
her miracles to seek.
Dark morning air is quiet now,
the people in their pews,
the priest abandoning megaphone
to disperse his news.
The old cat, too, falls silent,
for she knows well her mater.
If I haven’t catered to her wails
by now, I’ll feed her later!!!
This is the shrine to the Virgin of Guadalupe that the women were constructing in the hotel where we went for breakfast in Acapulco. Every night, we saw processions carrying their virgins to the church to be blessed. This is the twelve-day celebration to the Virgin that is practiced all over Mexico every December and what the very early church bells were about this morning. December 12th is her day and it is a bank holiday in Mexico. Five days to go.