Aquinas Strikes Out at Ave Maria University
Twenty minutes had elapsed since his interview
at the Florida-based citadel of piety,
Ave Maria University.
As Thomas Aquinas meandered through the saint-studded campus,
he conducted a rigorous internal debate
about whether he got the job.
He was buoyed by the necessity of his affirmative conclusion,
demonstrated in his own disputatio form.
After all, hadn’t he invented Thomism?
But some committee members expressed concern
about his unmarried status.
They constructed their own disjunctive syllogism
to guide their reasoning.
Either he was a zealous celibate,
possibly grounded in his brilliant thesis
about the natural inferiority of women,
or he rejected marriage to women
because of his unnatural lusts.
Aquinas hadn’t been asked about his celibacy,
although he would have revealed that his state of purity
was chosen for its liberating potential,
his time and body were solely his own,
free from the weight of another person’s soul and salvation.
After constructing their arguments about his sexual preference,
they declined to offer him a position in the Philosophy Department.
No one in the group could demonstrate beyond a reasonable doubt
a valid response to their most pressing issue,
“Does he?” “Did he ever?”