The Marriage of Margery Paston

Poem by James Knox Whittet

- Margery's resistance and love

You kept alive your romance by letters,

sent in secrecy to avoid their shame;

your life was bound by family letters,

you could no longer speak your lovers' names.

You were beaten; compelled to kneel on stone

Floors for hour after hour in fervent prayer;

you felt the sting of Father Gloys' voice drone

like questing bees across fields of clover.

But you held fast to promptings of your heart:

tapestries woven out of threads of ink

when pain and longing are shaped into art

to heal ancient fissures of social rank.

You heard love's whisper beneath shouts and cries

till wedding bells pealed beneath Norfolk skies.