Advent to Candlemas (Vol. 4)

Simeon's Death

Out of the dark, the old man came,
Half hidden by the swirling smoke,
Then ghostly, etched in flaring flame,
He raised his claw-like hand and spoke.

In faltering phrases, near to death,
He said his dream had been fulfilled,
And, as if with his final breath
He said his hope had been fulfilled.

His hand reached out to take the boy;
She had no option but to yield;
And, far from filling her with joy
She dreaded what his words revealed.

The ritual carried out in haste,
Shocked and depressed, they hurried home,
A sword had pierced her gentle breast,
Thrust by Jerusalem or Rome?

She heard the old man died that night,
Exalted by her child's face;
She wished that she had seen the light
That lit him to his resting place.