The prayer garden, by Britta Benson

The Dock Cafe is situated in Belfast’s Titanic Quarter. It’s volunteer run and one of the most peaceful places you could possibly imagine. You pay what you can. The walls are full of artwork. Much of it relates to Belfast and the Titanic. The atmosphere is made up of pure loveliness. But the best part is yet to come: the prayer garden. A separate corner you can retreat into, should you feel the need to simply sit on your own for a while. No one will disturb you. You can write a prayer on a post it note and stick it on to the wall. Sometimes it helps to give thoughts a shape and a place. Why don’t all public spaces have a little refuge like that? A quiet zone. An alone time spot. It would make life so much easier.

The prayer garden

In the back left corner of the cafe,

protected by an ornamental wooden fence,

nestles a prayer garden with open arms,

a light filled oasis, green, green, green,

with a broad leaf palm tree in the centre,

spider plants and peace lilies dotted

on shelves packed with random books.

I need calm, a refuge, after my scone.

So I sit, write my thoughts

on a small piece of paper,

stick my load on the wall.

What happens to a wish, a hope,

among brothers, sisters, hundreds?

One day, I guess, they’ll fall.

I pick up a tiny yellow note

that curls in front of my feet

and read: ‘Enough’. One day.

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