And is the meaning that we look for in the vast expanse of space
or in our silent inner place, really in that screaming newborn face
(No crying he makes?)
of a baby, oblivious to his fate, incapable of hate,
or in some hyper-epiphany, some existential state?
The baby awakes.
Do we, like magi tugged towards the east, turn to face the least,
or do we, making incarnations ordinary, just feast,
the stars in the bright sky?
As if to keep him meek and mild, as if to say he’s still a child,
in churches (if at all) as plain as barns, we kneel to tame the wild,
till morning is nigh.
The ox and ass and camel which adore, yes, but there’s so much more:
the rat, the flea, the louse, the parasitic worm, the fungal spore,
asleep in the hay.
Close by me forever: a manger, the oxen, a story that never
makes sense but, in the gloom, hoping it might be so, I cannot sever.
I ask thee to stay.