The Little Review (littlereview) wrote,
The Little Review

Poem for Friday

The Atheist Christmas Carol
By Vienna Teng

it's the season of grace coming out of the void
where a man is saved by a voice in the distance
it's the season of possible miracle cures
where hope is currency and death is not the last unknown
where time begins to fade and age is welcome home

it's the season of eyes meeting over the noise
and holding fast with sharp realization
it's the season of cold making warmth a divine intervention
you are safe here you know now

don't forget
don't forget
I love
I love
I love you

it's the season of scars and of wounds in the heart
of feeling the full weight of our burdens
it's the season of bowing our heads in the wind
and knowing we are not alone in fear
not alone in the dark


I spent a lovely Thursday with dementordelta, who came up early so we could go to a concert in the evening. And she brought me early birthday presents! Including a glass tree necklace from the Pennsylvania Renfaire and a giant snakey! We went to California Tortilla, then watched Ballet Shoes, which remains a really delightful film in which Emma Watson and Yasmin Paige are charming. Plus, the women professor couple and Richard Griffiths.

Then we handed my kids off to my mom and drove to Annapolis with apaulled, where we discovered a holiday Midnight Madness festival in progress -- the stores along Main Street were all decorated and open late, and there were baby alpacas outside the alpaca woolens store. We had dinner at the Ram's Head Tavern (everyone had some variety of seafood), then we went next door to the Ram's Head stage to see Peter Bradley Adams opening for Vienna Teng. I'd never heard him before and really liked him -- I bought his CD between sets.

Then Vienna came out and did a bunch of songs off her new album, including the very funny "Grandmother's Song" and the rather depressing "Antebellum," plus lots of requests including "Gravity," "The Tower," "Recessional," "City Hall" (which always makes me cry, but made me totally bawl in light of Prop 8, so that the guy sitting across from me was looking at me like he was worried about me), "Lullabye for a Stormy Night," "Green Island Serenade" when someone asked for the Chinese song, "Harbor" which she said was for Annapolis. She had the audience sing along in the encore to "Soon Love Soon." So it was a great day!

Vienna Teng and Peter Bradley Adams performing together at the end of his set on the Ram's Head stage.

Here is Peter by himself. I bought his album Leavetaking in the lobby.

Here's Vienna introducing "Grandmother's Song"...

...and singing "Harbor" at the piano.

I can't remember the title of the new song she sang using the synthesizer to provide her own backing vocals, but it involved snow.

The Ram's Head stage was decorated for the holidays... was the dining room at the Ram's Head Tavern.

And here's the exterior, a couple of blocks from the Maryland State House in Annapolis.

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