R. S. Thomas

St Julien and the Leper

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Though all ran from him, he did not
Run, but awaited
Him with his arms
Out, his ears stopped
To his bell, his alarmed
Crying. He lay down
With him there, sharing his sores'
Stench, the quarantine
Of his soul; contaminating
himself with a kiss,
With the love that
Our science has disinfected.

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R. S. Thomas