Good Life

Twelfth Night

The Christmas tree is dry:

Resin-dropping twigs whose silky needles

Stroked my hand in Advent, break and crumble.

Time, high time, to take the strung lights down,

The ornaments that shiver,

And from the mantlepiece the gilded star

Beside the homeless family it shown on.

Our house in space is here.

Our house in time is the terrestrial year,

Marked for us by the sun’s near disappearance

In night and winter storm,

And those three painted fugitives, who huddle

Against the chill of a wind-riddled byre

To greet a shining baby, small and warm.