I Survived a Silent Monastic Retreat

Don't Repeat This in Preschool

 Last summer I became intrigued by the idea of a silent monastic retreat at Abbey of Gethsemani in Kentucky.  I visited the gift shop and experienced some of the quiet, and it became my fantasy, to spend time in still reflection and writing for a weekend.  A friend was also interested, and last December we succeeded in getting a reservation for April of this year.

“But…what will you do there?”  people asked me.

“I hope nothing,” I’d answer.  “Hopefully write.  And read.  And just be.”

Most people thought I was holding back the details of some personal predicament.  They narrowed their eyes at me and grinned with suspicion.  I can only imagine what thoughts ran through their heads.  Early mid-life crisis?  Seeking forgiveness for secret crimes?  Contemplating divorce?  Scoping a quiet field to bury a body, where if someone saw me digging they wouldn’t be permitted to shout about…

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