Excerpt from The Seven Mountains of Thomas Merton, by Michael Mott [pg. 337]:
“A little more than a year later, on December 26, 1960, through a series of circumstances he could not have foreseen, Thomas Merton had his high place at Gethsemani and his hermitage:
Lit candles in the dusk. Haec regina mea in saeculum saeculi [This queen of mine to the end of the ages] – the sense of a journey ended, of wandering at an end. The first time in my life I ever really felt that I had come home and that my roaming and looking were ended.
A burst of sun through the window. Wind in the pines. Fire in the grate. Silence over the whole valley.
He was less than a mile from the monastery, still within the sound of its bells, writing by candlelight and the last sunlight of the short winter’s day in a small building constructed of cement blocks set on the crest of a low knob called Mount Olivet, a view of the valley in front, woods and a spinney at the back.
When he wrote to Catherine de Hueck Doherty, he called it his dacha.” [a Russian country cottage]
Thomas Merton’s Hermitage
With thanks to YouTube Channel: Gethsemani3