December 16-25, 2018


this worlds ruin surrounds me

creations wrack and wreck

its tattered crumbling rock

frail shelter for this fragile life

swaddled here in bits of cloth

I who spoke worlds into being

inhabit what has been made

the creator become creature

my power proscribed by a choice

I made long before this world

constrained within weakness

I have neither speech nor power

am weak

yet honour is being given me

I have been receiving guests

in my adopted throne room

who by their presence praise

this most lowly of all mankind

their eyes ablaze with wonder

humble spirits humbly bow

before their new born king

adore the one before them laid

wonder dancing on their faces

unconcerned to find me here

so far from that day long past

that day

we formed their first father

breathed our life into his lungs

gave to him their first mother

rejoiced to hear their song of joy

in the day that all was very good

long before their need of me

long infinities after our love

affirmed I would be the one

who would return their need

to joy

they have given me welcome

these low men of the field

stars shining in their eyes

then, excited share their news

run on feet too slow for joy

rush into my fathers town

loud and joyful praising God

their cries that light had come

waking their sleeping neighbours

proclaiming to those in darkness

that their long expected hope

had come!

had come, now, at this very time

had come, here, to this very town

the promised one had come!

would live as one of them

eat and breathe and sleep

as they

ate and breathed and slept

unknowing I would also die

that they themselves may not

and live again to prove their joy

had come

creation goes on around me

tyrant realms rise to fall

grass bends to gentle breeze

lovers hands feel tender warmth

astounded voices softly whisper

and I lie, helpless, dependent

on these two, who themselves

also helpless and dependent

from us receive their breath

as frail as I have now become

we weary three take our rest


beneath the glorious stars

we three spoke into their place

on a day so many days ago

to declare our glory to the Earth

remind a fallen mankind of us

give them the sign to find me

who for them will give his all


these stars, these two tired faces

smile peaceful down upon me

and I must learn their names again

must learn everything again

make my way on this side of glory

grow from babe to child to man

to lamb

these with whom my life is bound

whose faltering lips and shaking hands

do as best as can to please our God

they will remind me of all I know

will guard my way to all I am



Inspired by "What Child is This"

by William Chatterton Dix


This World's Ruin Surrounds Me
A poem by Peter Rhebergen

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