12.19.2021 – swaddling clothes on hay

swaddling clothes on hay
in a barn why the story
never does wear out?

Adapted from the poem, The Silver Star, by Carl Sandberg.

The complete poem reads:

The silver of one star
Plays cross-lights against pine green.

And the play of this silver
crosswise against the green
is an old story…..
thousands of years.

And sheep raisers on the hills by night
Watching the wooly four-footed ramblers,
Watching a single silver star—
Why does the story never wear out?

And a baby slung in a feed-box
Back in a barn in a Bethlehem slum,
A baby’s first cry mixing with the crunch
Of a mule’s teeth on Bethlehem Christmas corn,
Baby fists softer than snowflakes of Norway,

The vagabond Mother of Christ
And the vagabond men of wisdom,
All in a barn on a winter night,
And a baby there in swaddling clothes on hay—
Why does the story never wear out?

The sheen of it all
Is a star silver and a pine green
For the heart of a child asking a story,
The red and hungry, red and hankering heart
Calling for cross-lights of silver and green.

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