Poem – ANCESTOR WORSHIP (By Ray Gallucci)




The Gothic doors beckon me in.

I enter.  The nave is dim

Though from the vaults the lights suspend

And through the glass the colors blend.


I forward step into the past

Where medieval shadows cast.

Distracted.  What’s that I hear?

The chant of monks praying near?


Where columns rise, the open sky

Appears through slits of glassless eye.

The carven pews once so ornate

Transform to stumps supporting slate.


The cooling breeze no longer there

Propels me into musty air.

From walls of stone to earthen room

The torches glare on Roman tomb.


Spectres of toga-shrouded slaves

Now genuflect mid scattered graves.

They vanish; I’m left alone

To crunch atop some weathered bone.


The glowing embers on the floor

Reveal a place I’ve been before.

But only in memory

This grotto did I ever see.


Now shuffle in Neanderthals

To gaze upon painted walls

Where animals, some long extinct,

In timeless pose bend to drink.


With knowing smile, I turn my head

To see the corridor I tread.

Back in the distance incandesce

The lamps from century twentieth.


(published in SOMNILOQUY, April 2000, Vol. 4, No. 2, p.57;

POETIC LICENSE, September 2000, p. 27;



Author Bio:

I am a Professional Engineer who has been writing poetry since 1990. I am an incorrigible rhymer, tending toward the skeptical/cynical regarding daily life. I have been fortunate to have been published in poetry magazines and on-line journals such as NUTHOUSE, MOTHER EARTH INTERNATIONAL, FEELINGS/POETS’ PAPER, MÖBIUS (when Jean Hull Herman published), PABLO LENNIS, MUSE OF FIRE, SO YOUNG!, THE AARDVARK ADVENTURER, POETIC LICENSE, THUMBPRINTS, UNLIKELY STORIES, BIBLIOPHILOS, FULLOSIA PRESS, NOMAD’S CHOIR, HIDDEN OAK, PABLO LENNIS, POETSESPRESSO, SOUL FOUNTAIN, WRITER’S JOURNAL, ATLANTIC PACIFIC PRESS, DERONDA REVIEW, LYRIC, THE STORYTELLER, WRITE ON! and DANA LITERARY SOCIETY.