So do we dare to grasp the terror
Or will we cling to cosy crib
In coward’s sentimental error?
We’re too attached to all the glib
Complacent guff about the manger,
The cluttered stable’s tableau that
We close our eyes to obvious danger
That comes when God’s a human brat.
We dress it up in wine and holly,
We sing that wretched dirge afresh,
Ignore the scandal and the folly
Of God in Christ who takes our flesh.
For if God grasps us where it matters
And gives God’s self up to the shit,
Then uselessly deception flatters
And we discover this is it –
The chubby babe is but reflection
Of pain we’d flee if only he
Would have the grace to take rejection
From us who think thereby we’re free.
It isn’t what we call our hubris –
We sugar it with pious look –
But humans cannot but be fruitless
If we eschew Christ’s shepherd’s crook.
For heaven only comes when mortals
Accept their lot upon this earth,
Return through pride’s bewitching portals
And see the meaning of this birth.