The Father spoke one word, which was his Son,
and this word he speaks always in eternal silence.
St. John of the Cross.
At the woods’ edge I wait for you
to come heal the violence in me.
I look and look at the trees,
framing the plum stained sky.
I look and look at the fawn in the clearing,
the cedar with blue berries,
the red sun sliding under the horizon.
I look and look at the dark
creeping over the countryside.
At vespers you
peer in windows,
meow at the door,
home into my heart.
I cannot get enough
of you filling my senses
with sweet awareness.
You, the Word
in whom our wordiness dissolves,*
As leaves loosen and float to the earth,
we tumble over, lay our bodies upon the path.
You come, finger over your lips – Hush, be still –
to take back territories in our souls,
lands occupied by greed, fear, envy.
It is 5:28 pm, and I am weary of words,
the fury of opinions, righteous indignation,
and ideas clanking in the mind like heavy coins.
The vain prattle cannot muffle the murmur
of Herods plotting to kill innocents,
nor the hiss of evil waiting under every rock.
Yet I do believe that all we say and do
counts as nothing next to you,
into us from on high.
His father opened his mouth
out came Jesus.
His mother squatted over cold stones,
pushed, out came an infant
The child gazes into our faces.
A hand reaches toward us.
You – absorb our isolation,
sponge up our misery –
a soft warm cheek
to hold against the dark.
*The phrase, Word, in whom our wordiness dissolves, appears in the poem, Without Ceremony by Vassar Miller.