An Advent Victory

[Editor’s Note: Over the next three days, as the anticipation of Advent transforms into Christmas joy, Transept artists offer literary gifts for reflection during this season of Hope, Peace, Joy and Love.]


An Advent Victory


The dark-wood table holds a wreath

Of tired, twisted arms of pine,

Pierced with five holes and bleeding sap,

Cold and cheerless in a pit-mirk trap

And silent as the dead divine.


From soured mead-halls, twisted songs,

And battlefields long dead in mist,

A will o’wisp comes shining forth

And claims that all still has some worth,

That candle flaming Hope has kissed.


From tired chaos, battered souls,

And whirling voids of tortured night,

A second tiny spark burns still,

Uncanny, quiet on its hill,

As Peace puts up a lonely fight.


From mournful stiffness, blasted strength,

And tragic falls in every stand,

A humble laugh ignites a spark

For a third light dancing in the dark

As Joy comes to shake the land.


From friends betrayed, from broken hearts,

And from the questioned worth of pain,

A bleeding candle burns once more,

The fourth to see the stable door

And claim that Love should rise again.


And from a dirty feeding trough

Comes one last light to guide the lost,

A carpenter is born and set

Into the center; Savior, yet

A baby, to complete the cross.


And tongues of flame shine on the wreath

That’s crossed by candles and a grin.

The world still toils on its way,

But the branches sacrificed today

Rejoice His victory again.


  • Zeb is studying for an MLitt in Modern Literature at St Andrews. His academic interests include portrayals of worldview, culture, and mental health in fiction. He is particularly interested in the works of G K Chesterton and C S Lewis, along with other writers around their time. When not studying, he enjoys reading, being outside, making music, and attempting to write poetry.

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