Reub's journey

24 December 2009

Friday My Town Shoot-Out: Angels

The idea of the My Town Shoot-Out is to post photos of your local community every Friday. This week's assignment was chosen by Kim from Chicago.

Photo taken in Corvallis, Oregon.

I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and a healthy happy new year!

Well at last I get to share a favorite poem illustrating a favorite photo taken in St. Mary's cemetery on the top of Witham Hill in Corvallis. This person-sized angel watches over the grave of sweet Alma Pastega, who painted the earliest Christmas display figures in the series of photos from last week, and who died at age 90 last year.

by Maurya Simon

Who are without mercy,

Who confide in trumpet flowers,
Who carry loose change in their pockets,
Who dress in black velvet,
Who wince and fidget like bats,

Who balance their haloes on hatracks,

Who watch reruns of famine,

Who powder their noses with pollen,

Who laugh and unleash earthquakes,

Who sidle in and out of our dreams
Like magicians, like childhood friends,
Who practice their smiles like pirates,
Who exercise by walking to Zion,
Who live on the edge of doubt,

Who cause vertigo but ease migraines,

Who weep milky tears when troubled,

Whose night sweats engender the plague,

Who pinion their arms to chandeliers,
Who speak in riddles and slant rhymes,
Who love the weak and foolhardy,

Who lust for unripe persimmons,

Who scavenge the fields for lost souls,
Who hover near lighthouses,

Who pray at railroad crossings,

Who supervise the study of rainbows,

Who cannot blush but try,

Who curl their hair with corkscrews,

Who honeymoon with Orion,

Who are not wise but pure,

Who behave with impious propriety,

Who hourly scour our faces with hope,

Whose own faces glow like radium,

Whom we've created in our own form,

Who are without mercy, seek and yearn

To return us like fossilized roses

To the wholeness of our original bloom.


  1. Do you visit the cemetary to see angels and read poems?

    Is your daughter back for Christmas?

    Merry Christmas.

  2. Oh YES, but only on misty days when I'm wearing a long black woolen cape!

    And thank you for asking, J is back from Niger and enjoying a long hot shower this very minute.

  3. What a wonderful poem and a lovely angel. I hope you are having a merry Christmas. Is your daughter home for good or just for Christmas?

  4. This is a wonderful post. I've read the poem 3 times and will surely be back again. thanks for spreading it among us.

  5. Very nice for this theme. I do not know you or your daughter but feel happy for you she is there. Blessings

  6. So pretty. I love the angle of you angel shot.

  7. Hi JarieLyn, we are having a great Christmas, and she is back for good from the PC, but Africa in her now and she is bound to return there.

  8. Kerry, you always have such great insight. Super angel, too. Have a terrific new year.

  9. I always love it when beautiful text is matched by a beautiful photo! You have made a wonderful match in this post. So glad your daughter is home. Now that all my visitors have returned to their nests, I'm having a quiet moment missing my son in Brazil. Talking to him just isn't enough somehow!

  10. Wow I love the angel sculpture

  11. Love the poem and the photo. Hope you had a wonderful holiday!

  12. Both the photo and the poem are quite moving and thoughtful.

    With your daughter home this must have been a very special Christmas for you!
    Barry & Linda


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