The glass of water
Translated by Irene Wyndham
It cleanses the soul, or the spirit of man,
The conjunctivitis which blocks the vision of the blind man;
And, like an eraser, it washes away the black blood, anointing an exposed forehead
Then elevates the sacred beauty of the fingers above that of the fingernails.
It buffers the shock of grieving and overheated hearts
It eases the digestion of food consumed on the run
Exhorts the throat to assuage its thirst
Dampens the hair so it can be moulded into a pretty style.
It holds the key to life
And sprays man with its perfume
Until the final days of his life
When he transforms into a dolphin.
With its limpid flavour
It facilitates rapid benedictions through its nourishing pores
Oh water! It’s the source of all life
And its gentle aroma makes us forever long for more.
Saint Francis House, Oxford, 3rd August, 2006