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Friday, December 31, 2010

December dribbles - 31

He quit his carpentry job; will we call him lazy? He hung out with the down-and-outs, so will we call him bad? He came to a sticky end; will we say it’s his fault? Then they buried him.

His followers caused a fuss; will we silence them? Or follow Him?

Thursday, December 30, 2010

December dribbles - 30

Long-haired lay-about died. The crowds were shouting out for blood, quite the fearsome spectacle.

They strung him up with the city’s rejects, one each side, where everyone could see. Road stinks of blood. Birds are silent. Air still. A scared taste filling people’s mouths.

Long-haired lay-about died so we’d survive.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

December dribbles - 29

The long-haired lay-about’s causing trouble and cops are closing in. Seems only a moment since crowds were cheering him. Now they’re shouting for blood.

The long-haired lay-about calls us out for not doing as we should. Makes us feel guilty. He used to make us feel good.

Cops’ll silence him.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

December dribbles - 28

The long-haired lay-about rode into town on his motorbike, engine revving. Hangers-on gathered round, Fishman stinking of salty sea, and Taxman calculating odds. Twins roared and Thomas doubted this was right. Then long-haired lay-about beckoned all to “Come.”

“No,” said the old man clinging to memory, listening to different songs.

December dribbles - 27

Teenagers don’t play hide’n seek; they simply wander off; away somewhere; gone with the wind, with friends, with strangers, maybe. Panic sprays like dust. Fear tastes like donkey dung. Streets flash by while flying feet seek solace. And there he sits—all’s right with the world—about his father’s business.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

December dribbles - 26

Abram pretended wife was sister, fooled Pharaoh, and grew rich. Sara found Hagar who carried her child, then child found wife and mother to twelve tribes. Joseph, from the other twelve, was prisoner and king. Tribes grew, enslaved, set free. Then Jesus, born to free us, hides away, in Egypt.

Friday, December 24, 2010

December dribbles - 25

“I saw an angel Mom.”
“No way.”
“I saw a babe in a manger Mom.”
“Yes dear. You’re imagining things.”
“Saw shepherds.”
“There’s no shepherds in town.”
“Saw kings.”
“Don’t lie to me.”
“Saw a really bright star.”
“The moon.”
“Saw a family run away.”
“Silly boy.”
“Saw soldiers.”
“Flee!”

December dribbles - 24

“God’s going to be born as a child,” said the angel.
“No way. He can’t throw His glory away.”
“But He will.”
Then Lucifer fled through time and space to prove it couldn’t be true. He tempted woman and man; they fell; so the heavens tell, God born as child.

December dribbles - 23

The star tickles his eyes and dust his nose, which he buries deep in books to learn their meaning; starlight's seeming ever brighter in the sky. The secret words declare a king of those who don’t believe that stars have meaning.

Kings followed the star to find the holy child.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

December dribbles - 22

Cold at night; red sky, shepherd’s delight; dawn’s promised light; cold night.

The shepherds shiver, smell the sheep and scents of herbs and hay, see swaying backs white under moon, hear gentle gloom, sheep-saying cold at night.

It’s cold and dark, then spark of light is angels in the sky.

December dribbles - 21

Weary donkey’s walked a long hard way, back swaying, feet clop-clopping down on dusty ground. The master frowns. The woman struggles down. At least they’ve stopped and donkey’s found a stable, juicy hay. He brays at animals around him, strangers, maybe friends, then mother lays her babe in manger bed.

December dribbles - 20

Soldiers stamp on dusty ground while strangers mill around. Houses fill, the bedspace, roofspace, spilling people onto streets to sleep. A mother walks so near to giving birth, while father, dearly worried, tries to find a patch of earth where babe might lie. And taxman calls, “Be counted; Caesar’s time.”

Sunday, December 19, 2010

December dribbles - 19

The son will fly with tomorrow’s sun, bringing Christmas truly begun.
The family gathers; the wreath’s on the door; there’s happy times in store.
The dinner gets cooked, different menus parading as one.
The dinner gets shared, different offerings eaten. And son
Will leave with the year. Seasons Greeting’s everyone.

December dribbles - 18

The Big Freeze closed the airports—passengers stranded, desk-clerks frantic, pilots want to go home. The Big Freeze closed the freeways too, trucks sliding into snow-banks at the side. It even closed shops.

The Big Freeze closed the stores? Shock horror! Then shoppers stayed home warming hearts at heart-warmed hearths.

December dribbles - 17

“How does Santa know if we’ve been nice?”
“Magic,” says Mom.
“Listening devices,” says Dad.

“How does Santa go all round the world in one night?”
“Magic,” says Mom.
“Supersonic,” says Dad.

“How can Santa be in more than one toy-store at once?”
“Magic,” says Mom.
“Multiple personality,” says Dad.

Friday, December 17, 2010

December dribbles - 16

One more Christmas, one last chance to smile and build those memories—promises and dreams for all the years…

One more Christmas, but she’s gone. She smiled and gave us hope to conquer fear. She smiled and prayed and took the sacraments and went away.

This Christmas she’s with Him.

In memory of my Auntie Pauline.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

December dribbles - 15

He stood guard over nothingness, weary, bored. Sometimes lights flashed. Then nothing. Bored. Till the soldier heard her cry “Save me!”

Save who, he wondered. Who else was here, trapped on the outer limb of a Christmas tree? Then he saw her, dancing angel, glorious, bright. “Save me,” he cried.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

December dribbles - 14

The forest trapped her, green all round and branches tight at her knees. A canyon loomed, deep nothing where ground should have been. She shrugged slim shoulders, cape stretched high like angel’s wings, with upturned scarf a halo in her hair. Tin soldier looked bored. “Save me!” the dancer cried.

Monday, December 13, 2010

December dribbles - 13

Silver and gold
Tinsel and foil
Trouble and toil
To get it all right.
Silver and gold
Her head’s going gray
Now her life’s growing old
Now you’re going away.
Silver and gold;
Come home for the tree
Come home for the mother
The brother and see
Silver and gold.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

December dribbles - 12

Bob put Tom’s car-keys in the blender. Meanwhile Tom’s car disappeared. Tom sent for the police while Bob drove a miniature car round the Christmas tree. “Nee-naw” he sang. “Stick-em-up.” Not tactful. Tom was fit to explode. Then Bob, the elf, put a strand of Tom’s hair in the blender.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

December dribbles - 11

He left his shoes, and snow and mud, on the runner when he came in. He was a child.

He left one shoe in Iraq; left a leg there too.

He left no shoes when he was gone, but Mom hung onto one; found candies inside it when Christmas arrived.

Friday, December 10, 2010

December dribbles - 10

In dark earth a worm turned slowly to light. Bird swooped. Worm wriggled free.

In green tree a squirrel complained at the sight. Bird chattered. Cat pattered on grass. Bird took flight.

“Am I being good?” asked the boy who caught the spider. “Can Santa see?” Boy let it go.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

December dribble - 9

There’s snow on the ground and lights in the stores, and more. There’s gifts by the tree and Santas walking the street. There’s flying reindeer, noses glowing bright, and greetings, dreams and promises tonight.

It’s cold and wet and rainy gray outside, but kings still follow stars on Christmas cards.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

December dribbles - 8

Smiling brightly: “Happy holidays!”
Frowning deeply: “Happy Christmas.”
Smiling brightly: “Season’s greetings!”
“He’s the reason for the season.”

Playing music. Singing Santas. Children’s laughter. Teenage banter. But the frowner’s looking down on all the cultural delight.

Smiling brightly, little baby’s hailing shepherds, most unsightly, greeting strangers, wrong religion; welcomes all.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

December dribbles - 7

Santa’s sitting by stairs on a comfy chair. Fake flames flicker in fake fireplace. Santa’s elf, bigger than Santa himself, has hands that smell of soap.

Santa was sitting outside the store too. She knew him by his beard and loving grin. Red coat worn out, he begged for pennies.

Monday, December 6, 2010

December dribbles - 6

Somewhere a plane is flying. Somewhere a mother’s riding to her child. Grandmother brings her walking cane and slowly treads the land of Christmas tree and candy-canes. Christmas comes at the hands of the beloved. And boy who rarely smiles or hugs runs forward, eyes on eternity, joy welcomed in.

My Mum is on her way as I write, bringing Christmas on airplane wings.

December dribbles - 5

Puppies bounced through hedgerows while leaves turned into snow. Small legs raced fast through mounded white. And pups got stuck.

Mom clambered through hedgerows while leaves squelched into mush. She rescued pups and set them back on paws. Her feet sank deep in slippery sleet-sodden mulch, white sauce on brown.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

December dribbles - 4

The shoppers shop. The music plays. The candy-canes dissolve in sticky goo.

“Too noisy” says one vendor.

“No. Too quiet.”

“Too much religious stuff. Play Santa songs.”

The shoppers shop. The music plays. The vendors sing along, while holy child in manger smiles, and promises salvation when the Christmas-music stops.

December dribbles - 3

Time to write those thoughts and memories of a year, sighed Jan, when mail brought timetables of wondrous deeds: "Tom graduates," "Mike’s aced his test" and "Jess plays first violin."

Blinking on tears and thinking happiness, she wrote a letter filled with hope, then found her heart uplifted after all.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

December dribbles - 2

The Christmas trip… The Christmas trip on a plane to family abroad… The Christmas trip where you take off your shoes and struggle out of the wheel-chair, only to be asked if you’ve got any “soil” in your suitcase, and “When are you leaving?” But grandchildren’s smiles make everything worthwhile.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

December dribbles - 1

I remember Mighty-Max, his miniature figure in every design—“What color’s his shirt this time?” We panicked when a Transformer’s driver went missing—“He’s the robot’s head, Mom.” And I remember presents around the tree, piled high as the little boys’ knees. But now they just want flat-packed computer CDs.