Annunciation

Haiku of wonder

In these ancient tales
unexpected pregnancies
convey the wonder.

God, they assure us,
is at last doing something
to sort the world out.

An agéd woman
has managed to conceive, now
it’s her cousin’s turn.

The angel’s busy
conveying surprising news.
The girl is nonplussed.

Do not be afraid!
Easy to say, Gabriel;
it isn’t your womb!

You will bear a son.
You’ll call him Jesus. He will
do amazing things!

That, we know is true.
We will follow his story;
we will follow him.

Her fears overcome,
the girl agrees, allowing
events to proceed.

Only Luke gives us
these strange announcement stories,
stretching the waiting.

We’re left to ponder:
is wonder the same as truth;
and does it matter?

 

© Ken Rookes 2017.

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Found to be with child

Haiku of mysterious birth

The birth of Jesus,
as befits a Messiah,
was less than routine.

Matthew’s birth stories
are designed to assure us:
things are in order.

Prophet Isaiah
provides a girl giving birth
as a sign of hope.

Found to be with child!
One way of looking at it;
the girl was pregnant.

With child, and engaged
to a man not the father.
It’s complicated.

Her husband, Joseph
is a good man. He still cares,
does not want her shamed.

Dreams can be useful
to spark possibilities
and provide answers.

The angel appears,
reassures the sleeping man:
somehow God is here.

Do not be afraid,
take the girl to be your wife;
the child is from God,

When the man awoke
he took the angel’s advice;
brought her to his home.

When the day arrived
the girl delivered her son.
They named him Jesus.

 

© Ken Rookes 2016

How many?

Now the birth of Jesus the Messiah took place in this way.

In a similar manner do messiahs,
heroes, battlers,
has-beens and failures
begin their living.

A young woman,
barely pubescent,
finds herself expecting a child.
The man is surprised;
the man is always surprised.

A decision is needed.
The responsible thing,
the correct thing.
The ennobling thing,
the loving thing.

How many?
How many angels
will be needed
for the man to be persuaded to
do the right thing?

And how many tears,
both of joy and sorrow,
will be shed on the journey
to marriage, the birthing place,
and beyond.

© Ken Rookes 2013
Another poem for the 4th Sunday in Advent, year A, can be found here.

Let’s get married

Let’s get married
The nightmares of recent weeks
did not retreat with the decision
to allow his betrothed
to leave quietly, and have the child
in a far place among distant relatives.
There the shame
would not be so bitter.
the girl was young and pretty,
and would soon find a new husband,
and a father for her child.
The pain of her apparent rejection
was sharpened by the love
still twisting the stomach
of the gentle carpenter,
who had toiled with mallet
and chisel for many years
so that he might take a wife.
He had not seen it coming;
refused to believe it
until the swelling evidence
could no longer be denied.
So, when, in a dream, the angel
spoke of the strange purposes
of an even stranger God,
Joseph grabbed the offered straw.
Copping the nudges and the sneers,
he took Mary home to be his wife.

© Ken Rookes