Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Night Before

The desert floor cracks and yearns
Somewhere in one grain of sand
The memory of what was lost stirs
And launches itself into the thirsty wind
Men shift in their mournful sleep,
Turn their dark, dusty faces
And breathe their brokenness out
To a bright and insistent star
While slumbering women cradle
Their arms to their aching breasts,
Feel the heavy night contract and push,
Sense the cresting of a tide
And the crowning of All That Is
Bear down on a pregnant sky


  1. Wow!Awesome! Merry Christmas Eve, Erin
    Mom (your biggest fan)

  2. Such a strong poem, Erin! Absolutely amazing the way you are able to combine images of desert and childbirth. In this context I thought of the Advent carol "People, Look East," in which the phrase "the crowning of the year" is used in some translations. Crowning here melds that Advent memory into the coming, the birth, the cosmic arrival.

    I particularly like these lines:

    And breathe their brokenness out
    To a bright and insistent star


  3. Repeating the imagery of birth you've managed to evoke the mood of the night before the birth much awaited for. Beautiful Erin, Merry Christmas and I appreciate the comment you left for me today.

  4. nicely done for sure......and happy holidays to you and family

  5. A beautiful way to commemorate the nativity. The image of the opening four lines is especially lovely.

  6. So beautiful. You Erin are a poet divine.xoxo

  7. Oddly, for me, these lines too I liked,
    "The memory of what was lost stirs
    And launches itself into the thirsty wind"
    Nicely done Erin.

  8. Paul- I was not familiar with that carol, so I looked it up and loved it. Thank you!
    Irene--Thank you. I enjoyed your poem very much.
    Jeeves and Wayne-Thank you and happy holidays to you and yours!
    Francis-The first four lines were all I had for a long time...
    Annie-you are just so sweet. xoxo
    bearlyaudible--Thank you. I think those are my two favorite lines also.

  9. A lovely, lovely piece. Ancient and contemporary merge exquisitely.

  10. Thank you, Tumblewords. That's a lovely observation.

  11. Very powerful and yet quite dreamlike...
    I really enjoyed each image...

  12. An original and well described way to touch on the epiphany, and the nativity, tactile and so clear, but also so different from the winter scenes we are used to.

  13. This is wonderful! I'm so glad I came here belatedly to read this powerful image of Christmas.

  14. Love this--so belatedly that I wish you happy New Year and many more beautiful poems to share.