Epiphany – partly cloudy – poem
Cherie Konyha Greene
The people who walk in darkness
are coiling up their strings
of deluxe, miniature, cool-burning
and looking for the sun
to return by Eastern Airlines
from his Florida Solstice. At four o’clock, blinds down and lamps lit, I’m folding gold foil paper,
wrapping the creche in swaddling tissues
and vacuuming up dead needles
from the tree of life. Behind the hum of Hoover I overhear my throat
Veni, veni … (as if he never had). Like most productive citizens of Bethlehem (those not watching their flocks by night), I was baking fruit and nut bread,
filing out paperwork for Caesar,
sending formal greetings to distant relations,
navigating the marketplace in search of the best
price on frankincense, when the Gloria passed through town.
Following stars is something you can do when you live in the desert.
Enfolded in Great Lakes fog, I follow
the taillights of the Ford ahead of me
until the church’s white gravel drive
creeps out the haze and climbs its hill. Inside the sanctuary are spotlights and candles,
and I am informed, and inform you,
with all due pageant, song and reverence,
that Unto Us a Child is Born. Then home for turkey a la king
and off the Field’s
to return Aunt Mary’s myrrh.
From a well-salted parking lot
in a land without sun,
outside the lower entrance of Sears and Roebuck, I lower my parka hood
and tilt my head back,
looking for a star.
COPYRIGHT 1998 The Christian Century Foundation
COPYRIGHT 2000 Gale Group