On this eve of Herod’s wrath
Surround yourself with animals
And shepherds, stars, and fragrant gifts
From the earth; find the lowly places
And give birth to death.
Let the memories of trauma
Sink and sift through root and bone,
Hidden wells and sleeping seeds,
Let them die in silent peace,
And in the holy silence of bearing witness
And affirmation, transformation
And regeneration. Let them die
In the roar of trees trampling through valleys
Of sorrow to lift up the child and adopt the child,
and keep it safe as long as it wants, as long as it needs.
On this eve of Joseph’s dreams
And trudging over roadless sand,
Find the star, any star, and go, Egypt awaits,
Land of Ra and Isis, and sacred geometry
Of hieroglyphs and feather scales.
Go, and hold innocence
As never before—bring a sword and pocketfuls
Of stones, do whatever it takes to say:
Tonight innocence will be
Kept safe and cherished above all things,
And all life will be honored, and all beings
And faiths, all people and creatures,
All elements and angels, devils
And waterfalls, ponds, and lilies,
all stumblings and dancings,
All things seen and unseen,
Will be bathed in starlight and wrapped
In swaddling clothes.
On this eve of the saddest story ever told
Of a parent sacrificing his only child
To cover up for his own mistakes,
And letting scores of other children die
In its place,
On this eve of nevermore,
The child is king and queen alone
By virtue of its innocence—holy, exalted,
Full of wonder and grace,
Magnified and full of laughter.
The child born tonight shall never know
The pain of being separated from itself
Or the being abandoned to die while living.
It will be whole.
Saving only itself.
And the unity of all things
That echoes as a result
Will ring throughout the inner landscape of the soul
Setting fire to the imagination
And stream out of Egypt like a lion,
not forgetting its heritage and upbringing,
But to embrace the place that kept it safe
And call itself privileged to have been hidden
Those years in the land of pyramids and sphinxes.
And on this silent night, this holy night,
This raging night divine,
The child will be safe and sound,
and sleep in the tree of life,
like a baby owl, waiting to fly.