Not long the road to Bethlehem, not long:
The hours sped swiftly for I spun a song,
A lullaby that I would sing with joy
When I would hold Him close--God's little boy.
The notes I plucked from beauty on my way:
Lithe amber willows with their furry-gray:
(Would He love little kittens?) ancient palms,
An avenue of harps that strummed the psalms
Of David like a prayer; an olive tree
Wherein a dove was nesting; (He would be
The Prince of Peace.) a linnet fluting through
The quietude of skies of April-blue;
The lilies of the fields shy-whispering;
The grasses by the roadside new with spring.
From all of this I spun a song for Him.
(Would He love catkins on a willow limb?)
The donkey--Joseph leading--stepped so slow
And carefully, I wondered: did he know
He bore the unborn King? As dusk descended--
A few more notes and my song would be ended--
Came drowsy night-sounds ... Did a shadow flee?
One long discordant note wail Calvary?
No, not in my joy-lullaby! Instead,
A cradle moon low-hanging overhead
Recalled the waiting cradle Joseph made...
Travailing pain ... Yet I was unafraid
For high above there shone the Moving Star
And Joseph spoke, "Not far, my dear, not far!"
When I lay resting on the fragrant hay
I thought of all the beauty on my way
And sang the lullaby that I had spun
For I was holding close, God's little Son.