In Memoriam

A very dear "cloistered brother," Brother Louis de Montfort, O.P., died last night. One of his often used expressions was "unbelievable!" He said it with the first syllable pronounced and long. UUUUNNNNNbelievable!!!

For sure, he's saying UUUUNNNNNbelievable!!! right now.

I wrote this Sestina to explain who he was. A sestina (Occitan: [sesˈtinɔ]; Catalan: sextina, IPA: [sə(k)sˈtinə] or [se(k)sˈtina]; also known as sestine, sextine or sextain) is a structured 39 line poem consisting of six six-line stanzas followed by an envoi of three lines. The words that end each line of the first stanzas are used as line endings in each of the following stanzas, rotated in a set pattern. It is a 12th century Provençal form still popular today. from Wikipedia

Running Sestina

Working for the mob, he once was a scoundrel,
a runner, traveling from here to there,
Providence to Boston. Scrapes with the law
were frerquent and numerous. He'd escape
somehow to run again. When his luck ran
our he knew he was facing some hard time.

One night a battle of bullets stopped time.
The dead weren't talking, still one scroundrel
had to take the fall, and out of luck ran
into the law. Charges and bargains and there-
in lies the sentence. Star wishing to escape
did no good; no choice 'cept to face the law.

The judge called for the heavy hand of the law
to be laid on and he was in for a long, long time.
The Charles Street jail was not an easy escape,
but from scoundrel guard to original scoundrel
passed a saw. That's all it took to get out of there.
Once free and with new I.D. he took off and ran

to California. As Louis Montfort he ran
three thousand miles away from the law,
or so he thought. He thought he was safe there
and managed to lead a double life, but time
ran out again, as it does for every scoundrel
and this time he had no help or means to escape.

False ID, new wife, new name, but no new escape,
he was caught but good. Nowhere to turn he ran
into God. Sounds funny I know, but a scoundrel
can turn around, for there's a higher law
that commanded his attention and this time
he was still enough to listen. In prison, there

was Cursillo and Father Lataste, Rosary, and there
was preaching, praying, and learning, and no escape.
He had met a Dominican Sister and this one time
he heard her story and didn't want to escape. He ran
out of excuses and schemes and chose to obey the law
because Father Lataste said that once a scoundrel

didn't always have to be a scoundrel. There
was the law of love and he didn't need to escape.
He ran into St. Dominic and time stood still.


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