Christmas Eve Parable

by David Huddle

Phoebe, my five-year-old granddaughter adores the tiny
wax Jesus who lies in the cradle of the creche that came
down to us from now dead great grandparents. Wise men,
Mary and Joseph, two sheep, a cow and a donkey, it sits
atop an antique chest of drawers, at the perfect height
for Phoebe to study the scene, occasionally move the humans
and the creatures as she likes, whispering softly
to them all. Two years ago Phoebe carried the Baby Jesus
in her sweaty hand all over the house until he went missing
and turned up weeks later in the covers of her bed. Phoebe
still checks in on the creche, her face joyful as she surveys
our model Bethlehem and sometimes asks one of us to sing
Silent Night with her. Off-key non-believer forgetting
the words, I can still sing that old hymn with this child.

Last updated December 19, 2022