ESSAY

Week 4

“Christmas”

by Lynn Ungar, minister for lifespan learning, Church of the Larger Fellowship

It was all so complicated: 
The questionable parentage,
the awkward journey,
the not knowing where you will sleep,
or when the baby will come,
or what his life will look like—
even what the world will be like
when he is grown.
Life is usually that complicated.

It was all so simple:
Keep walking. Stop when you can.
Breathe. Through the pain, breathe.
Hold him. Feed him. Keep him warm.
Cradle his head in the palm of your hand.
These are things we all know.

It was, it is, so complicated
and so simple:
Love what does not belong to you.
Love what will be broken.
Love what mystifies you.
Love what scares you.
Love the aching flesh
no more and no less than
the brilliant star.
Love what will die
and what will be born again
and die again
and be born again
in love.