Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Season’s Greetings to one & all.

Christmas Poems. 


Noël ~ Anne Porter

When snow is shaken
From the balsam trees
And they're cut down
And brought into our houses

When clustered sparks
Of many-colored fire
Appear at night
In ordinary windows

We hear and sing
The customary carols

They bring us ragged miracles
And hay and candles
And flowering weeds of poetry
That are loved all the more
Because they are so common

But there are carols
That carry phrases
Of the haunting music
Of the other world
A music wild and dangerous
As a prophet's message

Or the fresh truth of children
Who though they come to us
From our own bodies
Are altogether new
With their small limbs
And birdlike voices

They look at us
With their clear eyes
And ask the piercing questions
God alone can answer.


Anne Elizabeth born November 6, 1911, in Sherborn, Massachusetts, Ms. Porter grew up with a love of poetry. Her mother always read poems to her children, which “gave us the idea that poetry was perfectly natural,” Ms. Porter said in 2006. Before she could write or spell, her great-uncle Laurence Minot would write down her poems and illustrate.

poetry foundation - Anne porter


Trio ~ Edwin Morgan

Coming up Buchanan Street, quickly, on a sharp winter evening

a young man and two girls, under the Christmas lights -

The young man carries a new guitar in his arms,

the girl on the inside carries a very young baby,

and the girl on the outside carries a Chihuahua.

And the three of them are laughing, their breath rises

in a cloud of happiness, and as they pass

the boy says, "Wait till he sees this but!"


The Chihuahua has a tiny Royal Stewart tartan coat like a teapot-holder,

the baby in its white shawl is all bright eyes and mouth like favours

in a fresh sweet cake,

the guitar swells out under its milky plastic cover, tied at the neck

with silver tinsel tape and a brisk sprig of mistletoe.

Orphean sprig! Melting baby! Warm Chihuahua!

The vale of tears is powerless before you.

Whether Christ is born, or is not born, you

put paid to fate, it abdicates

******************************under the Christmas lights.

Monsters of the year

go blank, are scattered back,

can't bear this march of three.


-- And the three have passed, vanished in the crowd

(yet not vanished, for in their arms they wind

the life of men and

beasts, and music,

laughter ringing them round like a guard)

at the end of this winter's day


Born Glasgow, Edwin Morgan lived there all his life, except for service with the RAMC, and his poetry is grounded in the city. He was Glasgow's first Poet Laureate 1999-2002, and the first to hold the post of 'Scots Makar', created by the Scottish Executive in 2004 to recognise the achievement of Scottish poets throughout the centuries.

Edwin Morgan Archive


This seasons joy to one and all from The Parrish Lantern.


merry xmas


Brian Joseph said...

Merry Christmas Gary!

Bellezza said...

Gary, I love "ragged miracles" from the first poem. Because those are the best kind: Jesus in a manger...who would think? And, after Christmas which always seems a holiday of excess, ragged and simple are my favorite adjectives.

I hope your Christmas was lovely. Thank you for the gift of words, in poetry and thought, which you consistently give to me.

@parridhlantern said...

Hi Brian, hope you had a great time. Best wishes for the new year.

Hi Bellezza, hope you had a wonderful Christmas with all those you'd wish for around you. Glad you liked the words, especially the first one, as it was you I had in mind when I picked it. My celebration consisted of 2 parts one being work & organising an Xmas party for 60 adults with learning difficulties, and my ragged, simple quiet one at home with my wife, daughter & the pup. Have a New year bountiful with blessings

Col (Col Reads) said...

"mouth like flavors in a fresh, sweet cake" -- what a wonderful way to capture baby's breath. Thanks for the seasonal poetry, and a very happy 2014 to you!

Bellezza said...

Tears in my eyes at reading your so meant back to me; thanks for picking just the right poem. As to people with learning difficulties, whether child or adult, surely we have a place in the role of bringing them joy. (Not to say that quiet nights with loved ones aren't the most wonderful!)

@parridhlantern said...

Hi Col, The best that you could wish for, for your New year, & glad you liked the lines.

@parridhlantern said...

Hi Bellezza, it was chosen because its sentiments seemed to chime with what I know of you, with the children, the faith & the time of year, all came together to put you in mind. Thanks as it is a wonderful poem. As to my job, it's at times like this that my job really gets to shine & all the year comes together to bring fun/joy? To those I work with/for.

Richard said...

Late Happy New Year, Gary--looking forward to another year of poetry and other posts from you!

@parridhlantern said...

Hi Richard, A great new year to you.

James said...

Thanks for the great Christmas poems and many wonderful perspective expanding posts.

@parridhlantern said...

Hi James, glad you like & although the blog is on hold, will keep the poetry going on @pomesallsizes