Monday, November 28, 2011

Christmas Time

I wrote this poem about a year ago.  I was walking and observing the Christmas decorations and listening to the music.  I considered how we celebrate Christmas.  As if in a time warp, we confine ourselves to “yon virgin mother and child, Holy infant so tender and mild.”  History intruded on that pretty scene.  Jesus’ family became refugees in Egypt, Herod murdered  the children of Bethlehem (where mother’s sons continue to die), and the once virgin mother’s heart broke at the death of her own son on the Roman cross.  What about the angels?*   What about us?  How will we celebrate Christmas?  Can we truly celebrate the birth without remembering the death?



Papier-mâché lamb so sweet

cuddles with cow and beast and boar.

A child’s hand with warm regard

places the lamb in excelsior


While angels slice through glassy haze

trailing shadowed threads of gloom,

hurling barbs of soot and ash,

bearing neither light nor tune

to suffering children.


And the weak

who— seeming strong—

take up the task of tuneless song;

Those weak who visioned gentler times

leave all comfort, sweetness, light,

for those to come; who now are here.


Whose eyes are blind to angels’ flight;

who listen not for angels’ tread;

nor hear the words that might inspire,

nor dream the dreams that push ahead.


The curtain shreds in silent scream

A mother’s heart is rent asunder.

Jingle, jingle, all the way

Let’s celebrate this Christmas wonder.



*ANGEL SLICES  (My favorite Christmas sweet)

1/2 c. butter
1/4 c. sugar
1 egg
1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/4 c. sifted plain flour
1/8 tsp. salt

Cream butter and sugar. Beat in egg and vanilla. Combine flour and salt. Add dry ingredients in 3 parts to butter mixture. Pat in 9 x 12 inch pan. Bake 15 minutes at 350 degrees.

2 eggs
1 1/2 c. brown sugar
1 1/2 c. chopped pecans
1 tsp. vanilla
2 tbsp. flour
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. salt

Mix and spread on crust. Bake about 25 minutes. Let cool.  Ice with 1 1/2 cups of confectioners sugar mixed with lemon juice.

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