Protestant Worshipper in St. Joseph’s Cathedral, San Antonio, Texas

By  |  December 31, 2013
Protestant Worshipper in St. Joseph’s Cathedral, San Antonio, Texas © Bigstock

Veronica is lovely. She wipes the dust from Christ’s face in the carving
beside Simon, though she is never mentioned in the Gospels.

I watch a bald woman glue tiny silk roses to the hands, feet,
and side of the body hanging on the crucifix. Healing is the end

of all things. Inside the cathedral, the congregants wear collared shirts
and panty hose. Tomorrow they will sweep floors, pick cabbage.

We are no strangers to ritual. Some of us descend into rivers, enact death,
burial, and resurrection, a little embarrassed by our wet hair.


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Jamie Quatro is the author of the story collection I Want to Show You More. Her writing has also appeared in The O. Henry Prize Stories 2013, the New York Times Book Review, Tin House, Ploughshares, McSweeney's, and elsewhere. Her forthcoming debut novel, Fire Sermon, will be published in early 2018.