Every year, I write a poem for Christmas, and include it in my Christmas cards to friends and family. For the days leading up to Christmas, I’m publishing all of my Christmas poems here, as a kind of Advent calendar.
Today’s poem was written in 1997, when I was a student at seminary. I remember being nervous about this one: I worried that it was too weird to understand.
“Write me a poem for Christmas,”
The old man asked the boy
“But what should I write it about?
I could ask Santa for a toy
“Or write how the people are happy
And give of themselves once a year
Or sing how the snow makes a blanket
For families gathering near.”
“Write me a poem for Christmas.”
The boy said, “I’m trying to write
But it’s so easy to become distracted
By the love and the carols and lights
“So maybe I’ll write about God
And the light that was given to earth
The light that reflects in our eyes
That carries us forth from our birth
“I can’t write this poem,” the boy said
“I don’t have the time to decide!”
“Yes,” said the old man, “You can’t write it now.
So write it each day with your life.”