Sunday, January 8, 2012

After the Epiphany


This cactus has rarely bloomed in the winter. Right before Christmas I saw the buds setting and moved it to a sunnier spot. An Epiphany cactus.
I got out T.S. Eliot's "Journey of the Magi" this evening and read it. It's an old favorite. The first and longest part of the poem is a vivid description of their journey by one of the Magi. He concludes:
All this was a long time ago, I remember,
And I would do it again, but set down
This set down
This: were we led all that way for
Birth or Death? There was a Birth, certainly,
We had evidence and no doubt. I had seen birth and death,
But had thought they were different; this Birth was
Hard and bitter agony for us, like Death, our death.
We returned to our places, these Kingdoms,
But no longer at ease here, in the old dispensation,
With an alien people clutching their gods.
I should be glad of another death.
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