In exile in France, in a secluded monastery in Brittany, Father Joachim has found quiet but not peace. In his native land, this Latin American priest fought for the poor, and was arrested and subjected to the torture known as the parrot's perch. The physical torture he has suffered has given way to a spiritual torment that cannot and will not die.
Asked to give the sermon one Sunday, Father Joachim shocks the monks when re rejects the exaltation of suffering and redemption, and in so doing challenges the very core of the Christian faith.
With merciless lucidity, in a prose of classic purity, Rio depicts the struggle of one man to come to terms with the cruelty of memory and the treachery of words.