Belleville, IL
Mar. 3 & Apr. 7, 2007
Contact Sue Collins
618 234-4956

Buffalo, NY
Contact Carol Buchla
716 639-7542

Erie, PA
Contact Pat Fronzaglia
814 824-5936

Flint, MI
Mar. 10 & Apr. 20, 2007
Contact Jean Haines
810 732-1068

Houston, TX
Contact Mary Hagan
713 946-8310

Maryville/Granite City, IL
Mar. 23 & Apr. 27, 2007
Contact Jeannie Wilbur
618 797-0989

San Antonio, TX
Mar. 17 & Apr. 20, 2007
Contact Fr. Gerry Weber, O.M.I.
210 477-0939

Owensboro, KY
Contact Melvin Fleischmann
270 686-8472

National Shrine of
Our Lady of the Snows
442 S. De Mazenod Dr.
    Belleville, IL 62223-1023
618 394-6281 (Voice/TTY) 
Fax:   618 397-1210
Victorious Missionaries handicapped symbol

What Did Joseph Know?

Beyond windblast and fear,
Crystal stars,
a voice in his ear

and the solicitude
of strangers

when he found shelter
for the woman he loved
to deliver an infant

not his own
before raising the child

who sat on straw
to watch Joseph build
tables and carts?

And what did he know
when later they stood

as father and son
to fashion from wood
every useful contrivance

except the one
where two straight trunks.

are stripped
of their green
and crossed over

with fear
posing as hate?

--Robert Longoni

Used with permission: Robert Longoni. Robert Longoni taught at the University of Arizona, where he also served one year as director of the Poetry Center, and Prima Community College, from which he retired as faculty emeritus. He is the author of a book of poems, Woodpiles. His work has also appeared in two anthologies and numerous periodicals. This poem is from a manuscript which he hopes to publish under the title The Other Face of the Incarnation: Glimpses of Gospel Life.


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