28 May


FRIAR photo: friar tuck medieval monk friartuck-medievalmonk.jpg

Brother Atticus was a Friar with a mission.

He knew a few things about life and a few more things about death. He’d watched people fade into the silence of the grave and decided he knew all about what was going on. It was his belief they were going to a far better place, and he was happy for them.

In Heaven,” he mused to himself, “there are all manner of wonderful things and the hugeness of eternity to enjoy them in! And above all the marvels there is the Love of my lord, which will be truly marvellous, for all forms of human love are barred from me and my order here on Earth.”

And he decided that it must be his own personal mission to spread the word. It must be his life’s toil to introduce those who were dying to the notion of a love-filled everlasting Heaven so that their endings may be as joyful as their lives frequently hadn’t been.

The time came, though, when all those about to pass beyond life had all done exactly that and were no more, and he had to seek for others who, though not obviously approaching the Grim Reaper, might have a sadness or a sorrow in their lives and thus benefit from his good words.

I know that you’re unhappy,” he said to a young widow, “I know that life is intolerable without your lord and Master to cherish you during the cold of nights and that you would be infinitely more happy playing with him amidst the fields of Heaven, rolling in celestial grass and giggling like you never giggled before, and making glorious love without any risks of unwanted occurrences or those dreadful STDs one hears about…”

What are you on about?” she replied, “he was a bully and a bastard!”

But you miss him so, the security, the knowledge that, when the nights are dark and fears stalk this earth of ours, he is there to protect you. But now he’s gone…”

Thank the saints!” she told him.

And I wish to help you… just think, my dear young woman,” his words leered over her, “I wish you to know that living is not in vain, that there is an end to all suffering … just think, for a moment, of the perfection of a life in Heaven … there can be no enemies there, no thieves and vagabonds… no celibacy…”

He was thief and vagabond, but no celibate,” agreed the widow, looking at him and wondering exactly what this odd friar did know.

You see what I mean … no man who thieves can get to Heaven, no man who molests or rapes or does any of the horrendous things one hears tell of … and when you get there, sweet lady, in the perfection of your own youth, the years will pass and you will age no more … that is Heaven and it awaits you… all you have to do is prepare yourself…”

Prepare myself?” she answered, dubiously.

Go to your home, sweet woman, to your cottage by the fields, and rest upon your palliasse, close hour precious eyes and imagine with the clarity of your young vision the perfection of the hereafter … the lightness of the air, the no need for back-breaking toil … the angels around you, tending to your every need, the gates barred so that no sinner may enter … and all you have to do is get there safely … so go to the haven of your little home and lie upon your bunk, and let sleep wash over you … no need for food and drink, there is no need for food and drink in that wonderful Afterlife that is waiting for you…”

And overwhelmed by the thought of a life lived in perfection, she said “what must I do, Master, to reach your Heaven and the life you promise waits for me there?”

And he smiled, the creases of that smile reaching the corners of his kind and generous eyes, and he lay his hands on her shoulders so that she could feel the warmth of him, and he let her bosom lie upon his manly chest (his one small reward for a life of celibate self-denial) and whisper, “do just what I say, child, just what I say. Go to your cot, smooth the harshness in your palliasse so that you might lie there in comfort for ever, and sleep the sleep of the enlightened. Let darkness and daylight roll pass you and dream all the time of your future in the folds of your Lord’s sacred robes…”

And no food, master, and no drink…?” she whispered.

He nodded sagely. “No food and no drink,” he agreed, “for every morsel you eat, every drop that you drink, will perpetuate the agonies of your life here on Earth. Instead, prepare for Heaven. Come, child, let me lead you to your simple cot, let me lie you down with the light of day barred from anywhere near your bed, and let me pray by your side …”

You by my bed, Master?” she asked.

Me, guided by the light of love that shines on me from Heaven, me holding your hand, me soothing your brow … me helping you unclasp your garments so that when your moment comes there will be nothing to hinder your transfer to the Almighty… it is written in the ancient books that I have glanced at…”

You have read them, Master?”

He shook his head sadly. “No. The words are deep and mysterious and in a tongue that is older than me and even older than the ancient order I claim as my sacred guide … the words were written in the Beginning, and they presage the Ending…”

In an alien tongue?” she whispered.

In the tongue of the Angels,” he nodded.

Then I will let you guide me, Master… I will let you banish the light from my bed, I will let you lie me on my cot, I will do what you say, kind friar…”

He salivated. “Then come, child…” he whispered.

And he led her to her humble one-room cottage, he barred the windows so only streaks of light could enter, and he turned to her. She was shivering, though the room was not cold.

You can feel our Heavenly Master’s breath around you?” intoned the friar.

I can feel it,” she whispered.

Then disrobe, my dearest, and lie on your bunk, and dream … dream all you can, let the light of Heaven and the Afterlife enter your eyes and find its way to your heart, and still it for ever…” he breathed, his head so close to hers she couldn’t be expected to see what he was doing, or the rising erection in his weathered hand.

Best make hay while the sun shines,” he thought, “for she’ll be a starved shell within the week, and Heaven-bound, away from me…”

© Peter Rogerson 28.05.14


3 Responses to “THIS HEAVEN OF HIS”

  1. pambrittain May 29, 2014 at 9:05 pm #

    He salivated? Gross, Peter. I guess he needs a little bit of heaven. Love the story and I didn’t see those two nasty words.

  2. Peter Rogerson May 30, 2014 at 11:05 am #

    From Gather to here and back again. I’ll use this site as well as Gather from now on, though I still feel awkward here

    • pambrittain May 30, 2014 at 6:09 pm #

      Me too, but I’m learning. Really ticked off that Gather has technicians capable of breaking through the AdBlock barrier, but they won’t improve the site.

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