You Came Slow, by Miriam Novotny – A poem for Advent 4 (2022)

Adoration of the Child, by Gerard von Honthorst, circa 1620

You Came Slow
by Miriam Novotny

You could have come with thunderstroke,
With lightning-spikéd wheel-spoke,
With cracking whip and blasting horn,
On cloud-enshrouded wings of storm.
You could have come with cyclone-speed
That rips away the roots of trees,
As quick as wind, as fierce as snow,
But you came slow.

You could have come with eyes of fire
As bright as sun, as sharp as wire.
You could have come with light so bright
It beat us down and smote our sight.
You could have laid the mountains low,
So large you crushed us with your toe.
You could have been titanic-tall,
But you were small.

You could have come with righteous wrath,
Destroying all within your path,
To smite us sinners, stained, disgraced,
So undeserving of your grace.
You could have come with sword unsheathed
And atom-power all unleashed,
With hammer falling from aloft,
But you were soft.

I’ve read many Advent poems over the last few years, but I haven’t met one that quite expressed the juxtaposition of Christ’s advent as a child in just this way.  He could have come like Zeus, like Apollo, like Thor, surrounded by thunder and clouds, with the cracking of whips and the rumble of chariots.  But he came slow, came small, came soft.

Miriam Novotny has graciously given me permission to share her poem on Remembered Lore.  She is a fellow Tolkienian and lover of folklore, myth, and the craft of storytelling.  She is a Habit member and has contributed to The Rabbit Room’s most recent publication of Arthurian lore, The Lost Tales of Sir Galahad.

It has been my habit to post poetry here during the season of Advent. You can find some of the poems I posted in previous years below. A merry Christmas to you and yours! May the light of a thousand candles shine upon your faces and laughter sparkle in your eyes.

Past Advent poems:

8 thoughts on “You Came Slow, by Miriam Novotny – A poem for Advent 4 (2022)

      1. So did I! I so loved the Uffizi – there just wasn’t enough time to soak everything in. Did you notice that WISDOM’s Christmas greeting this year used the same image? Great minds…

        Liked by 1 person

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