In the cold season, in a locality accustomed to heat more than
to cold, to horizontality more than to a mountain,
a child was born in a cave in order to save the world;
it blew as only in deserts in winter it blows, athwart.
To Him, all things seemed enormous: His mothers breast, the steam
out of the ox’s nostrils, Caspar, Balthazar, Melchior – the team
of Magi, their presnts heaped by the door, ajar.
He was but a dot, and a dot was the star.
Keenly, without blinking, through pallid, stray
clouds, upon the child in the manger, from far away –
from the depth of the universe, from the opposite end – the star
was looking into the cave. And that was the Father’s stare.
Joseph Brodsky, december 1987