I ... entered the poem of life, whose purpose is ... simply to witness the beauties of the world, to discover the many forms that love can take. (Barabara Blackman in 'Glass After Glass')

These poems are works in progress and may be updated without notice. Nevertheless copyright applies to all writings here and all photos (which are either my own or used with permission). Thank you for your comments. I read and appreciate them all, and reply here to specific points that seem to need it — or as I have the leisure. Otherwise I reciprocate by reading and commenting on your blog posts as much as possible.

10 October 2010

Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve

I liked the white flowers,
the white robes of the priests,
the soaring music
from the choir up the back.

I liked the wafting incense,
borne up the aisle
in metal bowls
on swinging chains.

I liked the Latin: ‘Adeste Fidelis’
more sonorous by far
than ‘O Come All Ye Faithful’,
‘Dominum’ than ‘Christ the Lord’.

I liked the late hour, the dark,
the magic of midnight;
my Catholic cousins’ excitement,
the festive, dressed-up crowd.

I was raised Agnostic,
streamed Protestant at school
for compulsory Religious Ed.,
and wound up Pagan.

Was it Midnight Mass
gave me my taste for robes and ritual,
music, incense, exotic words?
(Not quite what anyone had in mind.)

30 Poems in 30 Days, 2010: 23
Prompt: A poem that takes place at a public gathering

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