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Christmas Nativity

From Starlight to Candle-light

Picture taken 20 years ago at St Paul’s Rondebosch, Cape Town

Narrator 1
Look into the darkness of the sky
see the explosion of light
the stars in their billions
spread scarves of filtered light
Stars are falling like pearls
One star
Glows with intensity
Ascending the night sky
it calls to you
it calls to me
to follow, it says:
All: Go Now
Not tomorrow
Not a gift but your Presence.

It calls to Eastern Astrologers
to follow and it says:
“I will take you
To the One
who will show all people
the depth and richness of their hearts”
Astrologers and Kings arise
saddle your dromedaries
bring your gifts, follow
Balthasar of Arabia,
Melchior of Persia
Gaspar of India
Magicians and Alchemists
Come follow,
Star calls
Follow the star-light
Be led to the candle-light


Shepherds on the hill sides
Cold in the darkness
Cuddled by fire, by sheep
Sharing brandy, Breaking bread
When sudden from the night sky
spirals of descending
angel brightness
on cascades of star-light.
And Peace comes like doves
To calm the turbulent Earth
and goodwill fills the hearts
of bewildered shepherds
Children: Find the One
Who will show you how
Not by Emperor,
Not by kings and queens
Not with people of wealth and power

It says: Go Now
Not tomorrow
Not a gift but your Presence.


There is the land of Israel
city of peace Jerusalem
besieged by Romans, Jews,
Greeks and ‘gyptians
Unhappy city of Peace
Not there!
Not there!
But in a village
Bethlehem, the least
Hurry there with sheep
and gifts
and find the One
A little child
mother, father
parents poor
and enter there
the stable door
Pass hay stacks golden
Where cows and donkeys
bassoon and bellow the night
by starlight and candle-light
a baby is born
wrapped in cloths,
and loved to life
Here fluting shepherds come with lambs
and Magi come with gifts
frankincense, and gold and myrrh

Have you come
and are you here
follow, follow
Here you will find your heart
Its warmth of love
Its depth of joy
And a new beginning
Make a new beginning, for
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

Final quotation from e.e.cummings

4 comments on “Christmas Nativity

  1. susanmargaretsarah says:

    thank you Bob x beautiful x sue g Sue Gow 0834675995 0216853684 504 New Rosedale SA Legion Lower Boundary Road Rosbank 7700


    1. Greg says:

      Thank you,Bob. Hope you have had a happy celebration. Greg


  2. Craig Christian says:

    Thank you Bob for the above narative. I see lots of familiar faces in the picture.


  3. Thanks Bob for the narrative and then that wonderful end. Blessings from the root of the root to you. Viv


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