George Muir

St Francis Xavier’s Hand Travels Nova Scotia

Like the new skull of Lucy’s predecessor
St Francis Xavier’s forearm and hand

are making a comeback are causing a sensation
as they travel first class air across the woodland

of Nova Scotia. The poor dead saint and his
body part detached now living a life of its own

like the history of the humanoid his ancestors
from trees to caves to fields to farms

coming out of the wood to see the arm
waving to the Catholic crowds

those of us who wish the relic good health
on its journey back into our world

and remember the bones of an old cat found
beneath the porch of the summer cabin

the perfect skeleton left by devouring ants
left like a sacred artifact in the mind

of the ancestral child carried on its back
to the stars or the heaven

full of the secrets of the simple continuation
of the human race.

George Moore is the author of Children’s Drawings of the Universe (Salmon Poetry 2015) and Saint Agnes Outside the Walls (FurureCycle 2016). His work has appeared in Poetry, Arc, Orion, the Colorado Review and Blast. He lives with his wife, also a poet, on the south shore of Nova Scotia.

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