Ears and eyes and taproots and wooly tails,

claws and toes and staffs and shiny scales,

crawling and skittering and skipping and leaping,

scattering all over to proclaim love new reaping.

Unbounded hearts, unbounded parts making a whole

new band of followers and finders in a new role,

each clutching the other, each searching who to tell

out there, back there, over there in all Bethlehem’s ways.

Bumping into grumping shopkeeper,

slumping into dumping stall reaper,

tripping over soldier gear left at door,

skipping over kitchen slops slung in pour.

Friends now in single-minded mission mild

To beam out into all around the love from that Child

His nod, His commissioning smile, His go-and-tell eyes,

                                                                                                                                                                        To jiggle and jostle and wiggle and wostle His love to the skies.





Little Lost Lamb

Cock-Eyed Sheepdog

Nightingale Teacher

Singing Crow

Crowing Rooster

Crooning Dove

Fluttering Dragonfly

Spotted Goad

Old Hen

Young Weasel

Flop-Eared Boy

Flop-Eared Donkey

Stump Woman

Crook-Eyed Shepherd



Big-Nosed Shrub Girl

Young Mother-Girl


Shattering Stars


All unexpected critters and sort-of folks

Trailing into Bethlehem’s Back Gate

All joined so all can hear and see and feel and smell

All teaching and reaching together for this gate

All stretching towards the stall

Trailing into Bethlehem now so dry

All holding up each to each so in thrall

Trailing each a single sense of about to be glory

All holding up each to find drops of spirit fill,

All now gleaming through cracks in animal house,

As first come sheep, before come cattle, now come donkey,

Trail around a filling trough to never thirst again,

But no room for outside critters, no room for not-quite folk,

All now sliding down in weak adore of Light within,

But no spot for thirsting after righteousness,

All now pushed under old fallen roof joint,

All now falling under shattering starlight and crushing angle wings

Brushing the dews of morning down the joint spout

Draining the angel cloud weeps down into waiting throats,

Soaking the deep places inside the hearts in that corner,

Watering the life forces in each, to each, with each,

To loosen the tongues to tell the words in other far corners:

“Christ the New Born King is Come This Day

For to Love Us All, Bless Us All, Each and Every

Critter Unspected, each and every OutsideFolk Unspected.”


So all the expected ones and the unexpected and incomplete ones joined as one before

The Babe with  Young Girl Mother, all still with waiting and still waiting

The weary world to come and find, to come and give, to come and wait, wait, wait.





So middle of the night it twas

The straw quit falling, the spider quit spinning

Rimming roof holes only light that was

While muttering cockles and cooing tickles in twinning

Ruffled  ear of Perchy Owl causing no pause

In dreamy sighing of mice and men at their sinning.


Only crouching hare in lumbery weeds

Rolled eye at spikey star, dancing faint chorus

Twitching nosehairs in question of such creeds

Bunching paws and tail in tighter lest morass

Rolling from yon fields stick to ears like beads

While light spikes and wing lines flew to surpass.


Now Big Red did huff to sling out wings in crow

Smashing Miss Grey still deep in dreamy coos

But now swiveled about in cote feet in a bow

Almost tied about her neck such was the doos

And donts and cockles and doodles of Red in crow

That Miss Grey scarce membered in peace dues.


“Oh, Red, you big dusty, crusty, lusty yardbird are you!

“What brings you to crow and flap and scrape and scrap

“Our good night of rest with such cockling much ado?

“What cracked your eye at midnight, stirring my nap

In rocking me off my rest with such flapping todo?

“What in heaven or earth heard you to cause such snap?


“Oh, little Miss Grey, Miss Proper Miss Grey, do you not hear

Now the flap of other wings, the brush of spinning robes on your cheek?

“No, Old Mr. Importance Red Cockle, I was in perfect peace in my bier.

“I practiced my coo chords in quiet sleep needing to fill my soul in meek.”

“Woe is me, Miss Grey, shame on me, Miss Grey, for flapping your rear.”

“Too rude of me, Miss Grey, too bold of me, Miss Grey, for bumping your beak.”


“Oh, lest us be done with regret, Ol’ Red’; no matter, Ol’ Red, for I also hear,

“Some chord like golden silk in strum floating over field and hills,

“Coo,coo, indeed I do hear, I do hear song in need of no throat so dear,

“As those who carried first light, first dawn, first leaf in their bills.”

“Oh, please Miss Grey, if you will, Miss Grey, now permit my beak to clear

“This low roof beam as I fly to greet these heavenly winged trills.”


Oh, Big Red, Old Red, Loud Red, never did I think myself to nod

“In accord with such clatter, so peaceful is my name with the sages

“But just now seeing  human two below bending care to trod

“Just now seeing that man, that woman below some told in past ages

“Just now seeing that new babe swaddled in box so close to sod

“Just now I must trill with you, to spill with you all good news in magis.”


“Oh, Miss Grey, dear Miss Grey, sweet Miss Grey, how you lift my crowing

“Into a flying chord of clear express, Into a tune of high joy willing good,

“How we two, you and I, in stall so simple, now trill and thrill in towing

“All the news across this little town, over these weary ones that could

“Bed only down in hay, now rise up in song and trill, new glory throwing

“All around my every cockling crow new starry light crowning Babe so good.”


Now Big Red and Miss Grey sighed together in peace and joy and goodwill

As they tucked beaks under wings and muttered, no travelers yet seen behind the hill.








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