I am living, loading the dishwasher,
driving the van, matching socks,
when my little ones say, “I miss God.”
I know this missing.
One day I stood in my house,
my bed, my dishes, my tables
and chairs all around, and my
heart cried, I want to go home.
These mysteries break my heart.
I watch the morning sky;
I see mars, and jupiter and venus.
They hang, glowing ornaments
on invisible trees.
Does Christ hang this way, glowing
with generosity on all our invisible trees,
a call to desire giving our last two coins,
our last bits of chocolate, our last everything?
My heart breaks for these eucharistic mysteries.
The glass door is decorated with nose-smudges,
tongue-presses, and who-knows-what kinds of fingerprints
while the Christmas window-clings lie sparkling on the floor.
Advent has popped upon the top of me,
quick on the heels of a slow-in-coming Autumn,
a Thanksgiving whose late appearance leaves me rattling.
Our hand-made turkeys still hang on the wall,
probable witnesses to the Epiphany this year:
oxen, sheep, turkey.
Even on these cloudiest and darkest December days
the mess sparkles: strewn toy villages, soggy napkins,
crumpled tissues, packed bedrooms, loose bath towels, squabbling voices.
In the attic, the wreath and four candles wait for me to find them.
Lord, you know my heart before I do, for in you it has been created. You know my joy and desire, my sadness and fear, and it is you who instills in me this inclination to write it out, you who inspires my songs, my lament and my celebration.
Let your Spirit inspire me again, and always, to write what you would have me share, to describe what you would have me realize, and to explain what you would have me understand. And when my words fail, when they are disordered and poorly chosen, bless the readers so that in spite of my messy page, they will glean what you wish them to find.
In this, and in all things, my gratitude abounds.