For All the Saints
Most folks are home asleep, snug in bed,
while I, who cannot sleep, walk streets
cold with premature snow, searching for . . .
what? . . . some nameless unknown.
Traveling familiar paths at linguistic edge,
I have lost my way in thought
until, drawn by light, I happen upon center.
Victorian street lamps surround the town square
with its gloriously carved frozen fountain.
Like still-life figures carefully placed by loving hands
around the baby Jesus in nativity tableau,
the ancient torches stand like sentinels,
keeping watch over what once flowed free
and good with summer spray of grace.
Strangely warmed in memory, I find myself found
on empty benches where daytime pigeons brood,
dwarfed among stalwart saints that illumine such nights,
gratefully guided by Christ-candle sentinels
whose shining still beckons the peripatetic lost
in dark times to come keep centered watch
over what was and is and will yet be again.
© 2004 Tess Lockhart. All rights reserved.