‘What’s next, Joe?’

The first indication that

this child is  special

comes, not  from visions

granted late-night


living at the edge

of some vast desert


but to a couple: weary,

wary of strangers

in a town important

only as the ancestral

family home of



The family connection is ancient;

unfamiliar people

line the streets – conduct commerce

occupy homes once

known to his

father’s father.

A room – some space is offered,

out of pity – maybe greed –

what does it matter:

but rooms are scarce

and room is found

or made, perhaps for this

struggling woman and

her husband;

local boy made good,

or run off in search

of adventure – his fortune

slow to come.



but short of confidence,

that’s our Joe.

He’s come back to his

roots a changed man

who by this birth

will be further changed.

Hot on the heels

of dreams – strange visitations

and ideas fuelled by faith

in people

easily convinced

that God is up

to something.

Advent, 2015


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