I feel I can personally guarantee that St. Thomas loved God because for the life of me I cannot help loving St. Thomas. His brothers didn’t want him to waste himself being a Dominican and so locked him up in a tower and introduced a prostitute into his apartment. Her he ran out with a red-hot poker. It would be fashionable today to be in sympathy with the woman, but I am in sympathy with Thomas.

               —Flannery O’Connor, Letter to Elizabeth Hester, August 9, 1955


Sunday morning and what do I know

beyond my own foolishness? I spend

my days with crazies who come from my brain.

Thank God for Thomas. He keeps me sane.

A man who knows his nature and his end,

keeps both forever fixed in view

so as not to get waylaid on the road

to salvation, unlike the worser person

I am, easily derailed by temptation,

what’s pretty and what’s witty and what’s new.

Like the peacock loves his tail I love my work.

Seduced by sinners, fools, & jerks

I delight in as I write in my study,

my pen my poker, my thoughts often bloody.