Poem 155 – Four Candles

Sunday we’ll light four candles,
Our perennial joke,
Anticipated for weeks.
Someone will shout ‘nah, fork ‘andles’*
And we’ll laugh. Again.
It’s strangely fitting. Back then
No one saw it coming.
Now we hold our breath and
Open doors until Christ’s
Born; God’s Son, the perfect
Joke who laughs with us
Divine anticipation.

In the church calendar, this Sunday is Two Ronnies Day, or at least it is in my head (*If you don’t get the joke, you’d better watch this: https://youtu.be/CNTM9iM1eVw). The following Sunday is Christmas Day, the day when God caught everyone by surprise.

© Ben Quant 2022

Poem 148 – New Glasses

A new morning
A new month
A new razor
Feeling smooth
New glasses
A new look
I put them on
Everything’s moved
A little sharp
A little close
A little blurred
All’s confused

Picked up new glasses today having become aware that my prescription was slightly off. A little readjustment’s required!

© Ben Quant 2022

Poem 147 – November Walk

Four pm. November walk along
The Lea, the light is fading fast and all
Is dim. Like children’s plasticine the colours
Merge, the palate turns to shades of brown.
The sky blends with the gently lapping waters.
By naked trees who’ve shed, their colours bleed.
The air is mute, its voice is muffled, dull,
Only the Christmas lights dare interject.
From bankside windows, hope defiant flickers.

To end a period of Covid isolation, I took a walk along the River Lea this afternoon. I’ll never get bored of how the same stretch of water changes throughout the year. I didn’t think to take a photo, this one is from the same time last year, towards the river.

© Ben Quant 2022

Poem 145- (This is) Our Christmas Song

It’s the season of Advent (in the church calendar, this starts four Sundays before Christmas, not on the 1st Dec.), and so to celebrate I’ve finally organised a proper domain name for this site (www.odefortheday.art) and written a Christmas carol:

Verse 1:
What did it mean for you our holy king
To put on human flesh and leave
Casting aside eternal dreams
To be born the son of Mary

Verse 2:
Experience our hopes and fears
Share in our sorrow, our sufferings
Embrace the passing of the years
To be born the son of Mary

And so we sing, our Christmas song
Our praises ring, all season long
For the Son of God has come to us
Immanuel, now one of us
Yes this is, our Christmas song!

Verse 3:
You came obedient to the end
To a manger bare in Bethlehem
The gift of God by Father sent
To be born the son of Mary

Verse 4:
An invitation in your hand
Offering the chance to begin again
Sing out the news across the land
About the son of Mary

And so we sing, our Christmas song
Our praises ring, all season long
For the Son of God has come to us
Immanuel, now one of us
Yes this is, our Christmas song!

This is a first draft, no doubt it will evolve, but it was fun trying something a little different to a straight poem. It came about as a result of a challenge to write a Christmas song that sticks to the original story without too many cliches.

© Ben Quant 2022

Poem 46 – Advent One

And so the Advent season starts once more
The annual wait for Jesus Christ our hope
To come in human form, the Word made flesh
Mysterious, incarnate, God with us
This year our yearning seems more keenly felt
A weary longing seeking something more
After two years of such disrupted life
Lived greyscale not in technicolour bright
With generations past and yet to come
We cry with one voice come Lord Jesus come

Today we lit the first candle in our Advent wreath and began our seasonal wait for the coming of Jesus. Like yesterday’s poem, this is an experiment with iambic pentameter, not my natural voice, but something I’d like to work on.


© Ben Quant 2021