On the top floor of the Prince-Bishop’s castle
we could look all the way down into the courtyard
below as we stood next to the huge wood arches
these gigantic quarter turns of tree that must be
a thousand years old already when they were cut
and sawed in slices so thick they could hold up
a castle ceiling even though one actually had
this massive imperfection, a whorl, a humongous
knot exactly where the span needed most to be
strongest where stress stops and digs in to just
concentrate force field of weight and mass and yes
gravity and perpetual fall of everything human and
planned and there we are in the Prince-Bishop’s
this secular-spiritual-culture over our heads ducking
at those wooden arches to look down into castle
courtyard at a succession of April/May weddings.


James Van Looy has been a fixture in Boston’s poetry venues since the 1970s. He is a member of Cosmic Spelunker Theater and has run poetry workshops for Boston area homeless people at Pine Street Inn and St. Francis House since 1992. Van Looy leads the Labyrinth Creative Movement Workshop, which his Labyrinth titled poems are based on. His work appears weekly in Oddball Magazine.