“That first Christmas evening”

I wish a merry Christmas and blessed Christmas season to all my readers.

It is common, in some circles in which I move, to say that Jesus was born “that first Christmas morning” or even “that first Christmas morn.” But I, being curious and something of a quibbler by nature, have at times wondered: what time of day was the Christ Child born? Is the idea that he was born in the morning “possible, but in this life we’ll never know,” like the popular notion that there were exactly three Magi (or in fact that he was born on what is now December 25), or “unlikely,” like Rossetti’s charming, picturesque, theologically on-point, but in-details-dubious poem “In the Bleak Midwinter”? Continue reading

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“Day’s End”

It’s always a good sign to, at day’s end,
When crawling into bed, be satisfied
With all the work my hands have done in it.

What’s not so good is when that phrase “day’s end”
Has come to mean some hours after midnight,
Hours later than I thought it was.

Lord, grant me courage, strength, to do my work
In daylight hours, few though they may be,
Then, day complete, commit to you my rest.

I began this poem some weeks ago. At the time I had thought it would turn out as just another “verse paragraph” of medium length, as most of my poems are these days, but the cohesiveness and meter of the opening sentence caught my attention and directed me to the idea of stanzas. It rattled around in my brain for some time until I finished it this week.

As always, I earnestly welcome your (further) comments, suggestions, questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. (In other words, if you liked this poem, or you didn’t like it, or it made you think of something, or … please leave a comment to let me know.) If you liked this, you can follow this blog, which includes one of my poems every Friday, or read other poems I’ve written here on my blog (perhaps starting with those linked from one of the “archive ” installments, since the full archive is by now, at over two hundred poems, somewhat daunting); I’d especially like to know, as part of my preparations for a collection, which poems you think are my best. You may also share this poem with others, subject to my sharing policy.

This poem is also mirrored on my wiki.

“Evening Prayer”

Lord, guide my thoughts by day and night;
Direct my steps by day
To follow naught but your Word’s light,
And keep me in the narrow way.

I lie awake—Lord, grant me sleep
And rest from all my strife!
Hear my soul’s prayer from in the deep
And lead me into life.

This poem came to me earlier this week, when I was trying to get to sleep after a long and fairly productive day. I think it could use another stanza or two, but this length suffices enough for me to post it here today.

As always, I earnestly welcome your (further) comments, suggestions, questions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. (In other words, if you liked this poem, or you didn’t like it, or it made you think of something, or … please leave a comment to let me know.) If you liked this, you can follow this blog, which includes one of my poems every Friday, or read other poems I’ve written here on my blog (starting with the links in one of the “Poetry Archive” posts in the index I posted yesterday, since the full archive is by now, at well over a hundred poems, somewhat daunting); I’d especially like to know, as part of my preparations for a collection, which poems you think are my best. You may also share this poem with others, subject to my sharing policy.

This poem is also mirrored on my wiki.

“Evening Shadows”

Each Friday I post a poem, until I run out.

The sun slips slowly down to its setting,
And day by day the year draws to a close;
Long shadows stretch across the verdant lawn
And scattered brightly colored fallen leaves,
Still lengthening before at last the night
Falls quickly, silently, upon the town.
An autumn chill descends beside the dusk;
The seasons change again. Soon winter’s breath
Will touch the window panes with frost’s white kiss.

I composed this in my head while mowing a lawn late in the evening in late October, watching shadows fall across the lawn. I originally intended to write more, perhaps some lines extending the idea of autumn as the evening of the year, but I think this stands well as it is. In any case, I earnestly welcome your comments, suggestions, critique, or other feedback about this or any other part of my work. You can also read other poems I’ve posted on my blog.

This poem is also posted on my wiki.