Night Thoughts


I can’t recall ever being happy,
Truly happy,
Till tonight.
And even stranger—this is a happiness
Quite apart from money,
Inns, or other business.
A “spiritual feeling,” I should say,
If I were “spiritual.”
I think this must be how
Those young folks feel.
I’ve never seen a pair
So much in love—
Or quite so tired.
They must have searched for hours
To find a room.
A room!
In crowded Bethlehem!
His voice was low and cracked,
Dried by the desert heat:
“Please, have you a room?
We have asked in all of Bethlehem.
But all is full.
My wife is tired.
Have you anything?”
I almost told him no!
Almost.
And would have, too,
Had I not seen her face.
If ever I behold an angel,
It will look like her:
Sweet,
Loving,
Pure.
And I could tell
Her time was near
To bear a child.
I wish I could have helped them more.
A stable is not much.
Oh, it is clean;
The straw is sweet and fresh.
But still, it’s just a stable.
I wish …
It is a lovely night,
Not a sound.
The stars are out in glory.
Strange …
There’s one I’ve never seen before.
It’s a bright one, too.
I could almost read
Just by its light.
(If I could read, that is.)
I wonder why I’ve never seen that star before?
It seems as if it were just lit;
A brilliant lantern in the sky,
Above my stable roof.
A brilliant lantern in the sky
To tell mankind
Of some great deed.
A wondrous star.
What’s that?
A sound …
A newborn baby’s cry.