Glorious Old Wood and Books

As Dom Damian climed the ornate spiral stone staircase to the library, he could see aerial views of the grounds through the small windows cut into the walls. He gasped when he opened the double doors. Books, books, books: books climbing the walls to the tall ceiling, with a center aisle case of more books. The library was about as wide and high as the Chapter House below, but longer; he guessed about eighty feet. A crucifix hung at the far side above a white Madonna and child. The crisscrossing thin wooden joists of the ceiling created intricate intersecting horizontal and vertical lines. All he could see was glorious old wood and books. He felt overwhelmed with excitement.

—Nancy Klein Maguire, An Infinity of Little Hours: Five Young Men and Their Trial of Faith in the Western World’s Most Austere Monastic Order

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2 comments on “Glorious Old Wood and Books

  1. […] while back I posted a quote from An Infinity of Little Hours on the ecstatic reaction of a Carthusian novice on discovering the library at the Parkminster Charterhouse. To see what that […]

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