Journey to the margins


To the margins

Magi are wise

enough to know
their certain ignorance.

Drawn to the magis,
they long, rather than know.

They follow a star,

stirring light

in their hearts
more than the sky,

To the margins, where
even goats lose their footing,

they make a silent journey,
growing in hope

that the child within
and the Child without

will recognise each other.

Marlene Marburg


The return of the Magi

To the east and further east we were counted amongst the wisest of men,
For we had mastered all the signs of the firmament,
Made wonders of our speculations.
Silken with honours, we were the Magi;
Until the night that we were drawn by that one dogged star
That ranged beyond all our scrutinies,
And by the rumour of a king that came from nowhere.

And then this Herod
Who rose to us like a stroked cat's back
Eyes shining like a fox.
And we were brought gravely down to Bethlehem,
With Herod's breath still leering on our necks,
A mean suspicious place
That ended in a sty,
Where, it seems, we were impelled to look down,
Down into a rude manger
And into the incalculable sovereignty of a child.

When we left that place we were borne away
Upon a vessel named Excelsior,
Swollen with sail, leaning lightly on the wind,
That steered impeccably through an ocean of stars.

Grant Fraser

Marlene Marburg headshotMarlene Marburg PhD (Theology) is a spiritual director and the Director of Student Formation at Sentir College of Spiritual Formation in Melbourne, Australia. Her poetry has appeared in journals in Australia and overseas including Spiritus, Studio, Divan, Poetrix, Eremos, Westerly and Presence



Grant Fraser headshotGrant Fraser is a lawyer, poet and filmmaker. He has recently completed a short film, Rembrandt Van Rijn and he is presently working on a longer production, Strangers to the World, which has as its subject the lives of Thomas More, Etty Hillesum and Franz Jaegerstaetter. 

Topic tags: new australian poems, Marlene Marburg, Grant Fraser



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Existing comments

Both poems exquisite.
Pam | 22 July 2013

No doubt you both are aware of TS Eliot's poem of 1927 and that also of WB Yeats, undated, probably of early 20th century.
Margaret | 26 July 2013


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