December 20

December twentieth, first of Elliot’s Ariel Poems, “The Journey of the Magi” (1927). "Magi" is Unitarian T. S. Eliot’s first of 5 Christmas poems published after his ambivalent choice to join the Anglican church. Many believe that Eliot's feelings about his new church are reflected by the magi who narrates the poem, who confesses that after the exotic journey to Bethlehem finding Jesus was a disappointment. (The tradition of reading Isaiah 6:3, and Psalms 72:11, together with Matthew 2:1-12 is why people telling the Christmas story sometimes refer to the magi as kings. In fact, magi or wise men refers to royal advisors who were knowledgeable in astrology, divination, and magic.)