Ancient Nativity in a Modern World.
This, the nativity time of year.
Mum’s plunder cold, dark drawers
for old sheets, worn out tea towels
forgotten dressing gowns
and dusty summer sandals.
This, the time of transformation
from iPad children
to first-century shepherds
bearing cotton wool beards
alone at night on a hillside.
Two weary travellers in a darkened hall.
one pregnant with a cushion
ask for rest for the night.
Mums pray that the answers may be true,
“I’m sorry” instead of “plenty mate, come on in!”
In the darkened space
parents with halting, bated breath
watch their children herding wheeled sheep
slowly into the light, who nervously utter
‘Lo a star has lit the night!’.
In a hay bale stable visitors arrive.
Grand wise men riding hobbyhorse camels
laying gifts, rich and shining for the baby.
Shepherds flock to the scene
leaving a lamb as a gift.
All has gone well; the players have played their part.
Modernity leaves and an ancient calm presides.
Footsteps transport hay to every corner,
each person walking in that path of history.
Each person taking that history home.
After all have left, the lights turned off
musk of hay pervades that darkened space.
Wheeled sheep stand cold and silent.
Turbans and dressing gowns lay discarded.
and an empty crib stands amid the shadows.
Above the scene there is a sense of what has been,
the spirit of Christmas held aloft.
In our busy modern world
we are reminded of what has been
and through that nativity
our collective love is held once more.
14 December 2021.