At the end of a dark stairwell in Besalú
there remains an ancient miqva
where Jewish women bathed after childbirth.
Seven steps took them into the pool
of purifying water
that now stands only finger-deep.
But there is a glistening upon it from sunlight
breaking through a high, narrow window.
In the cavernous hush of crude stone walls
forgotten mother breaths rise blood-warm
from the water.