Second Week of Advent 2016

Advent Prayer of Peace

Here, I stand
on the threshold
of a new year—the crush
and clammer
of the Christmas rush,
pulling me in
toward their
Black Friday sales,
and discount
jeans and blouses.
This storm
of activity, 
a distortion
of reality,
is only one side
of the story.

If I turn and face
the quietness
of your presence,
the artificial
lights and the whine
of the frantic crowd

Instead, I settle
into the soft curve
of your neck.
I listen to the steady, 
thump of your heartbeat.
My breathing slows
to match yours—

You swaddle my
tired, worn body
in linen cloth—
You hold me like
an infant at their
mother’s breast.
Contented, I rest.
Here, I know,

Lara Stoudt