Star of the Nativity

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

Een gedachte over “Star of the Nativity

  1. This wonderful poem of the Nativity has moved me. The horizontal view the poet takes as well as the vertical, both being presented as dots in depth – the star and the child – adds to the cosmic dimension of the event of the birth of Jesus. The stare of the Father looking at his Son, represented in the star from the opposite end of the universe, illuminates what has happened: God from afar has drawn near to the earth in the greatest mystery ever: The Word became flesh. In him was life, and that life was the light of men.

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