Advent 2014: Holding up


We've had windstorms around here the last few nights with gusts up to 50 miles per hour. Lying in bed listening, unable to fall asleep, I've had some numinous moments, feeling blessed to be awake when no one needs or wants a response from me. Knowing I'm suspended and held.

Here's a poem from Christian Wiman's new collection Once in the West about being bent but not broken, about holding up in spite of the storm:

After a Storm

My sorrow's flower was so small a joy
It took a winter seeing to see it as such.
Numb, unsteady, stunned at all the evidence
Of winter's blind imperative to destroy,
I looked up, and saw the bare abundance
Of a tree whose every limb was lit and fraught with snow.
What I was seeing then I did not quite know
But knew that one mite more would have been too much.