for now – a prayer for advent

it happened so fast

this year, like it does about this time every year, every turn we take around the sun.

a movement we know in our bones that still catches us by surprise 

the earth turns its northern face from the sun.

the way the light comes through the trees these days speaks of perpetual morning, perpetual evening, 

no high noon, just the in-between 

night, morning, evening, then all over again 

and the deep darkness holds on, strengthening its grip every day, 

for now, anyway,

though i’ve noticed how clear the sky is these nights

and how the stars look different now than they did when we still knew high noon

perhaps the constant coming and going of the light leads us to turn inward, to strain our eyes to see the constellations in our own dark skies, to sit with them a while, since we know the light will keep us waiting, anyway

and waiting. and waiting. 

for a while, anyway

 

i have known high noon

i have been warmed by sun

i have sat basking in her radiance

but for now—she keeps her distance

 

for now, anyway, the fleeting angled glow that comes with each small turning is enough for me.

for now the lengthening, strengthening night holds on, 

speaks of another turning:

a turning in the cold. the dark. under cover of night, with just the stars to guide it. a turning we know in our bones that still catches us by surprise:

the proud humbled.

the hungry filled.

the rich emptied.

the broken healed.

the whole world spinning, turning, now on its head and then upright again, and then over again. and again.

so we sit, and wait, and watch

for now, anyway 

for now the turning, turning, turning bids us hold on as we sit and wait and watch,

bids us turn our own dark skies

until they are rearranged for a new season, 

bids us dizzy and dazzle ourselves with the radiance within 

and keep vigil in the night.

for now, anyway. for now we breathe in the frigid air 

and hold in our bones the turning: 

ancient, unfamiliar, 

old, new,

for ever

for now.