The child in winter

One more Christmas I can really do without!
Celebrating humbug with a half-cock shout!
All that hassle over tinselled nothingness.
All the hollow happiness and hostile peace.
Well-meant gifts of consumerist trumperies;
Tied-up parcels of synthetic flummeries;
Counterfeit affection under plastic mistletoe;
Imitation robins in the ersatz snow.
Lack-lustre glitter from a fraudulent star
And angel dummies mouthing glory from afar.
Starched and ruffled choirboys insincerely sing
In sanctified museums while the taped bells ring.
Non-drop needles from an inorganic spruce,
And a hormone-fed, cooped up, taste-free goose.
Full-up, fed-up, filled with alcoholic cheer
And still remaining senseless with each new year.

 

But Winter is come irrefutably real.
Whipping into senses with talons of steel.
Hard the callous ground beneath relentless wind;
The burn stands frozen by the barren furrow.
Hunger in the mouth of the dog fox and hind,
The dark eyes staring in the sett and burrow.
Sharp black tree limbs puncturing the sky,
Crystallised hoarfrost pricking out the thorn.
Out in the world hear creation’s icy cry
At the gruelling pain of another dawn.
Passionless with cold, the spirit robbed of breath,
Yearning for salvation from a sterile earth;
Yet focussed fundamentally on life and death,
The cosmic universe waiting for rebirth.

 

Therefore was the naked God-in-Child laid low,
Not at Merry Christmas, but in Winter’s snow.