My Cart 


Mass Magician
Carl Palmer


In the pew between the altar and us,
the young mother tries to calm her toddler
during Midnight Mass on Christmas Eve.

The cranky child distracts focus from our
priest's recount of the Christ child's story.

Reverently catching the little boy's eye,
my dad unscrews his right index finger
to reveal the stub to the astounded lad.

Dad wiggles his undone finger a bit before  
screwing it back on in blessed silence of the
serene child of God and a grateful congregation.

© by Carl Palmer.
Used here with the author's permission.


Carl “Papa” Palmer lives in University Place, Washington now, but grew up on Old Mill Road (the name of his latest book) in Ridgeway, Virginia. Retired from the military and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), he enjoys being a Franciscan Hospice volunteer and being “Papa” to his grand descendants. Carl is the author of nine chapbooks and his work has been published in more than 200 journals around the world. His motto is "Long Weekends Forever!"






Post New Comment:
Wilda Morris:
Much better than getting angry and scolding! "Let the little children come unto Me."
Posted 12/24/2023 09:13 AM
Such fun and a blessing!
Posted 12/23/2023 01:36 PM
Lori Levy:
Tender poem.
Posted 12/23/2023 01:18 PM
liz dolan:
I must admit nothing fascinates me more than watching a toddler doing his best to disrupt Mass. What a great scene you painted.
Posted 12/23/2023 12:06 PM
My dad did something similar to get me to smile during my defiant moods. Thanks for reminding me and enjoyed your poem!
Posted 12/23/2023 11:43 AM
This just wonderful Carl. I gotcher nose, a coin out of the ear. Therere a bunch of them and they all work to amaze the little ones. You nailed it.
Posted 12/23/2023 10:40 AM
A surprisingly powerful poem, which sent me to the dictionary looking up how many syllables to give blessed.
Posted 12/23/2023 10:13 AM
Beautiful! And I practiced the movements just in case.
Posted 12/23/2023 09:55 AM

Contents of this web site and all original text and images therein are copyright © by Your Daily Poem. All rights reserved.
As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases. Purchasing books through any poet's Amazon links helps to support Your Daily Poem.
The material on this site may not be copied, reproduced, downloaded, distributed, transmitted, stored, altered, adapted,
or otherwise used in any way without the express written permission of the owner.