Here we are arrived at another Advent and I’d like to share some Advent poetry with you, as I did last year. I will keep the commentary to a minimum, as is my usual habit, and allow you to soak up the verses as they are. Enjoy and ponder.
by Rowan Williams
He will come like last leaf’s fall.
One night when the November wind
has flayed the trees to the bone, and earth
wakes choking on the mould,
the soft shroud’s folding.
He will come like frost.
One morning when the shrinking earth
opens on mist, to find itself
arrested in the net
of alien, sword-set beauty.
He will come like dark.
One evening when the bursting red
December sun draws up the sheet
and penny-masks its eye to yield
the star-snowed fields of sky.
He will come, will come,
will come like crying in the night,
like blood, like breaking,
as the earth writhes to toss him free.
He will come like child.
Like R.S. Thomas of “The Coming,” which I posted last year, Rowan Williams is a Welshman and Anglican priest. The earth is writhing in this poem, friends. It is cold, dead—like a garden in winter. But then that last, gentle line, like a whiff of crocus-flower: “He will come, will come…He will come like child.”
Blessings as you await the Coming.
Poems from other years: