Happy Birthday, Mother
This was her birthday. Dawn came early
In her party garments pearly,
Bringing gifts all diamond-bright
For her who brought the world’s first Light.
High-hedged purple asters smiled
On this fair September child.
“In heaven, where our people are,”
They said, “we call her ‘Morning Star’.”
The birds were here. They sang all day,
Though they were packed to move away--
But not without a farewell nod
From the spotless Dove of God.
The dogwoods came. With hope to please,
They wore their April dimities;
Politely talked of oil and balm,
Though they have never seen a palm.
Assumption lilies waited, tall
And elegant beside the wall;
(They once were white, the legends say,
But blushed to see her fair as they).
Late roses came. They should, you know,
As she is Rose of Jericho.
They brought perfume—fair flasks they chose.
(Vessel of Honor, Mystic Rose!)
It rained awhile, but afternoon
Brought a belated gift of June
And said the tears reminded her
Of One Who is their comforter.
Echelons of geese went by
And dipped a wing, and cried their cry;
The voice of God o’er wood and hollow--
For them—for her!—Oh, follow, follow!
Chrysanthemums were at the gate
When evening stars came, very late,
And did for her a courtly dance
Across the river’s still expanse.
Only Daphne lingered on
After other folk were gone.
We chatted then, as well we may,
About Our Sweetness, born this day.
"Party Day” by Sr. Mary Jean Dorcy, O.P.
Photo credit: MSSR (top) and Sant'Anna e Maria Bambina (bottom)