Advent Lament

manger-with-cloths

(poured out in response to the shootings in Newtown and Everytown; date:  December 14, 2012)

We’re in the middle of Advent…

but it feels

like Good Friday has broken in:

O Come,

O Come now, Emanuel….

Why on earth

is the manger empty–but for blood-soaked swaddling cloths?

Teeth-clenching, gut-wrenching

lip-biting, broad-siding

a salt-waterfall

comes cascading down,

deepening despair

and disappearing

into the depths,

its source and destination the same.

Its source and destination the same,

out of the depths,

babbling and

billowing hope

comes burbling up

the tear-choked channel.

Heart-mending, fear-ending

breath-taking, life-shaking.

We’re in the middle of Advent,

but it feels

like Easter is breaking in:

O Come,

O, Come now, Emanuel….

Why in heaven

is the manger empty–but for lily-white grave cloths?


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