December 17, 2013

Quiet Dismissal



Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way. When his mother Mary had been engaged to Joseph, but before they lived together, she was found to be with child from the Holy Spirit. Her husband Joseph, being a righteous man and unwilling to expose her to public disgrace, planned to dismiss her quietly. But just when he had resolved to do this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary as your wife, for the child conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will bear a son, and you are to name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins." All this took place to fulfill what had been spoken by the Lord through the prophet:
"Look, the virgin shall conceive and bear a son,
and they shall name him Emmanuel," which means, "God is with us." 
When Joseph awoke from sleep, he did as the angel of the Lord commanded him; he took her as his wife, but had no marital relations with her until she had borne a son; and he named him Jesus.
-- Matthew 1:18-25 


Quiet dismissal is what we do to you still 
when you are close because you flush our faces 
red with your pregnant unexpectedness
invading our strategies and medicaments
ruining our safe careers and nest-egg certainties
we would have sent you off Joseph-like
to a small town halfway house clapboard grey
where you could birth your ways behind windows
in inaudible isolation and irrelevance
and we move on to another love and another
so what singing angel will come to us in reverie
to save us from ourselves and our best intentions
and head off our ego-preserving diplomacies
and gospel us with the message we dread
and always need in our flat barrenness:
Fear not the mysterious that labors for love.
In spite of us uncontrollable mercy is with us.

1 comment:

  1. Amazing, amazing poem. Thank you for sharing it.

    ReplyDelete