Sunday 20 December 2020

Sunday 20th December - Advent at home - 4


The is the last of the four 'Advent at Home' posts - to see posts from the other participants, go to Angela Almond's blog Tracing Rainbows 

I've been using poems from the Advent Book group I joined, taken from Carys Walsh's Advent book 'Frequencies of God'

This week's theme is 'Birthing', starting with the poem 'The Un-born' by R S Thomas;

The Un-Born – R S Thomas 

I have seen the child in the womb,

neither asking to be born

or not to be born, biding its time

without the knowledge of time,

model for the sculptor who would depict

the tranquillity that inheres

before thought, or the purity of thought

without language. Its smile forgave

the anachronism of the nomenclature

that would keep it foetal. Its hands

opened delicately as flowers

in innocency’s garden, ignorant

of the hands growing to gather them

for innocency’s grave.

Was its part written? I have seen

it waiting breathlessly in the wings

to come forth on to a stage

of soil or concrete, where wings

are a memory only or an aspiration. 

I too, have seen a child in the womb, my own, twice, back in the 1980s. We were given polaroid pictures of what looked like stars in the night sky. It took faith and determination to form the curled outline out of the baby from the apparently random shapes in the picture. Scans are much clearer these days...

 This evening I looked out to see if I could see ‘the Advent Star’; formed by the conjunction of Saturn and Venus, lined up together to make a brighter spark in the darkness. (Look for the moon, track right, and down a bit, and there it is!) I was lucky this evening, and there were even radiant lines shooting out from the star.

 In a time like this, when so many hopes, dreams and plans have been disrupted by the pandemic, going back to the small centre of things is a way of getting through. I saw this posted on Twitter this morning... 

(written by Christian Aid Scotland)


  1. Thank you for this. I am so conscious of the recurring theme of Emmanuel - God with us in posts and Facebook etc this year. Nothing can separate us from his love. Whatever else is lacking, his presence remains

  2. That was a lovely post to read. I've found it hard to write anything profound this year for my Advent posts with Ang but I'm glad to have done them.
    Emmanuel, God IS with us!

  3. Oops, Saturn sand Jupiter, not Venus!