Advent

And the miraculous comes so close
to the ruined, dirty houses

- Anna Akhmatova, 1921

Our world may be smaller now,
the star older and fainter--
just a little gloss on the soft-focus eyes
of that tiny ancient newborn--

All the more need for hope,
that pull of a distant star,
the longing which moves the miraculous close
and transforms our ruins--our stardust.

Muriel J. Nelson lived in Federal Way, Washington, when this article appeared. She had taught music in public schools and was studying Russian so she could read the great Russian poets in the original.

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Sojourners Magazine December 1992
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