Gloria, a transition

December 11, 2020

After Maurice Duruflé’s Messe ‘Cum jubilo’

There’s a moment in the Gloria
when the Father simply leans down,
down to the shepherds, fruit pickers, gleaners,
down to the pregnant, the children, the sick, the injured, the lame,
down to believers, agnostics, artists, scientists, poets—all
abiding in the field in pens like a huge factory-farm flock

with the son now in its center
where the father leans down,
A to B,
and like the worst pain
the mighty organ halts all motion.

Then the loudest stop (loudest pain)
drops out. There.
Another power drops. There.
Another and another. There, there.
Till only rest on earth, a song still to be heard,
and a sleeping baby’s breath remain.