Prayer to St. Paphnutius, Feast Day September Eleventh

Prayer to St. Paphnutius, Feast Day September Eleventh



O Holy St. Paphnutius, who also died, who also suffered,

we offer you our petitions.


Saint of the fallen,

we offer you collapse.


We honor you this day for dying unnoticed,

so that no one knows what killed you,

unaccoutred martyr.


Celibate defender of married clergy,

sympathetic to needs you do not have,

hear us.


Saint of the incomplete, looking through one eye

and feeling the lips of an emperor with the other,

see us.


Saint of extraordinary timing,

pray for us,


now and at that moment everyone has forgotten who we are.




Donald Zirilli

Donald Zirilli was a finalist for the James Tate Prize and a nominee for the Forward Prize. He was editor of Now Culture and is a member of the Red Wheelbarrow Gang. His poetry was published in The 2River View, Amarillo Bay, ART TIMES, The Hamilton Stone Review, Nerve Lantern, Nixes Mate, River Styx, and other periodicals and anthologies. He and his wife live in an idyllic corner of New Jersey with two dogs and a cat. His chapbook, Heaven’s Not For You, was published in September, 2018, by Kelsay Books.

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