Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Rituals: Friday night

Praise to the Rituals that Celebrate Change

Praise to the rituals that celebrate change,
old robes worn for new beginnings,
solemn protocol where the mutable soul,
surrounded by ancient experience, grows
young in the imagination’s white dress.
Because it is not the rituals we honor
but our trust in what they signify, these rites
that honor us as witnesses—whether to watch
lovers swear loyalty in a careless world
or a newborn washed with water and oil.
So praise to innocence—impulsive and evergreen—
and let the old be touched by youth’s
wayward astonishment at learning something new,
and dream of a future so fitting and so just
that our desire will bring it into being.
Dana Gioia


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