The Coming of Hope

It was slow and cold over the malevolent mountains

where icicle adorned camels tread on vague 

suspicions of trails. Their bitter breath freezing

in the air and each of us huddled gasping against

the icy blasts. The camps were hard; starting a

fire and hiding under the rough rugs and skins,

sheltering under the lee of snow weary camels,

with whitened humped backs or cool rocky caves.


We thought we’d understand, but soon forgot what 

it was that drove us here. A star hidden by dark 

clouds, just glimpses to direct our guarded gaze. 

Plodding feet of chilly camels. Holding on to the 

idea that somewhere was a birth that was God 

given. Months ago we’d spied the star as it rose, 

spilling its golden beams over the earth.  Each of us 

serious in science, astronomy and have called us wise.


Though seeing us now, cold and blizzard blown, they

might not  think it wisdom that sends us on the way, 

but the desperate need to be in a place away from the 

wolf howling, grinding, wind of violent living. The

drifts of snow became light dustings. And, we could 

see trees and the apathy of mountain passes became 

joy of green valleys where we rested, hunted and then

slept. But the beckoning star called us to continue on.


Thru’ the glittering night watches and gathering ourselves, 

we walked on towards a future that may be no future. 

Doubts come in droves in deserts, fearing our foolishness 

we arrived at a place our forebears knew and called the 

city of peace. The gold globe of  the temple shone 

in the late sun and the curious people jostled us with 

questions  and insults as our camels shouldered their 

way up narrow streets lined by newly laden stalls. 


Our arrival noticed.  We are coldly summoned and

invited in to see the suspicious king whose questions

hurt.  Gradually we learn that he is a tyrant and a 

jealous man and we are caught in his spider web,

and there is no new- born king, only a silly hope

born of scientific observations and superstition. 

and now with wounded pride we hear his hidden 

snarl as he ask for our return with eyes of iron.


Twas the news of the baby he wanted. Like an asp,

he would worship the opposition. Perhaps we 

were wise after all – searching for goodness and 

seeing through his veiled threats and violence. 

As we left,  the star brightens on the horizon. 

Faith, like a newly lit candle wavered and held.

It was not far the unfolding. O’er Bethlehem it

shone. We murmured and mumbled as it stopped.


And we asked of a baby. And we met a few ’til

we saw the child, and felt the surrounding holiness.

No need for words, 

we fell down. 

We worshipped 

one we did not know,

and hoped that this smiling gift 

would not be crushed by our hope.  

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margins are a great place sometimes because it is where change happens fastest but it is also a horrible place when we are stuck in them and grace is the moment when we can see that someone cares.

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