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"And, O, The Stars Were Bright!" - A Christmas Poem

Updated on December 8, 2011

There are so many wonderful songs and poems that tell the Christmas story. From the sonorous verses of the King James Bible, to the soaring lyrics of our favorite hymns, poets and musicians down the ages have taken their turn at telling and retelling the tale.

It is, at once, a most simple event, yet, at the same time, singular. It has had dramatic consequences, forever changing to course of this world's history for better or for worse, depending on your point of view. Nevertheless it is a wondrous thing, that the birth of one small child could cause such sweeping change.

I have written several Christmas songs, and, in fact, while writing this poem, had a melody running through my head. Perhaps this shall become a song one day. In the meantime though, it is a story poem, told in simple words, about the a baby, and a bright star that guided kings and shepherds so long ago...


A section of the Christmas Tree Galaxy showing newly formed stars (pink & red).
A section of the Christmas Tree Galaxy showing newly formed stars (pink & red). | Source

And, O, The Stars Were Bright!


On a night in cold December, rode a woman, great with child,

On a donkey, meek and gentle, with her husband by her side;

To be numbered for the census, many came, from far away,

No room left, but lowly stable, which became her stopping place -

And, O, she bore her baby there,

Laid him in the straw;

Witnessing Love's miracle,

The ox and ass looked on,

And the stars shone all around...


In the hills above a village, shepherds wait for morning's light,

To keep their flocks in safety through the long and wintery night,

Voices from the skies cascading, bright with glory, songs of joy,

Bid the frightened men have courage, "Go and seek the mangered boy!"

And, O, the skies were filled with light,

Such beauty on them shone;

They ran; they left their sheep behind,

To see Love's holy child

And, O, the stars were bright....


Through the cold and dark of winter, 'cross the desert, strangers came;

Bringing gifts of balm and spices, gold, from kingdoms far away;

Some have called them men of wisdom, some have called them men of power;

But they came as wondering children, simply following His star;

And, O, it led so brightly then,

Beckoning them on;

Blazing through the winter night, and

Heralding Love's son

And they followed where it shone...


In the quiet of the evening, winter snows or verdant dales,

We await the new Messiah, and we share our father's tales

Of a land, once dark and starless, 'lorn of hope - for heart, no ease;

We tell the story of a baby who was born to bring us peace;

And, O, it shines within our hearts,

A story for all time;

Love's star come down to light our way,

Love's light for all mankind,

And the stars that shone so bright that night, still shines in you and me

As we welcome friends and family, and place upon our tree

A star, a single shining star, to keep Love's memory -

And, O, the star is bright...


Santa Lucia Procession, Sweden
Santa Lucia Procession, Sweden | Source

© 2011 Text by Elle Fredine, All rights reserved

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    • RedElf profile image
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      RedElf 4 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, frogyfish. The photo was a real find. I am still learning how to make videos, but this one is at the top of my list once I learn how.

    • frogyfish profile image

      frogyfish 4 years ago from Central United States of America

      Your poetry is tenderly beautiful! I would like you to make a video of this and post it when you do. The true story, the real meaning is presented so simply. Really liked that Christmas tree photo too.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      amithak50, thanks so much - Christmas and family are two of my favorite topics.

    • amithak50 profile image

      amithak50 5 years ago from India

      Thanks for the nice poem ..I enjoyed reading it

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, David. Merry Christmas to you!

    • David Legg 7 profile image

      David Legg 7 5 years ago from Trout Paradise, Colorado

      I hope to be able to hear it soon! You could probably YouTube it and then link it here, but there might be better ways to do it. I'll be watching for the posting.

      Merry Christmas!

      David

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      David, thank you so very much. Yours is quite the most complimentary critique I've had in some time, and your kind words inspire me to write more! I am working on a melody/arrangement for the song, and will post it here if I can figure out how to do that (I guess I'll have to do some research).

    • David Legg 7 profile image

      David Legg 7 5 years ago from Trout Paradise, Colorado

      I absolutely love this poem. It is rare to find someone with the ability to tell a story that requres such contextual boundaries, and then give voice to the subject with meter, embue it with lyrical quality and to still really tell the story with force and direction. You don't waste words, and you never descend into a greeting card sing-song, but instead, with spare and elegant language you have woven together the various strands of the Christmas story into a vivid tapesty, a worthy offering for a King. Thank you for sharing it. I really do hope you put it to music.

      Sincerely,

      David

    • htodd profile image

      htodd 5 years ago from United States

      Great poem..I love it

    • htodd profile image

      htodd 5 years ago from United States

      This is really great poem ..Thanks for that

    • James A Watkins profile image

      James A Watkins 5 years ago from Chicago

      Absolutely beautiful! You have the gift. Thank you for sharing it with us.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Thank you for stopping by and commenting, friend Hh.

    • Hello, hello, profile image

      Hello, hello, 5 years ago from London, UK

      Thank you for this wonderful hub. They are certainly lovely Christmas songs about.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Nikkij504gurl, thanks so much for your kind comment!

      sagebrush_mama, it's one of my favorite topics, too! So glad you enjoyed!

    • sagebrush_mama profile image

      sagebrush_mama 5 years ago from The Shadow of Death Valley...Snow Covered Mountain Views Abound!

      Beautiful, my first and favorite theme for poetry, from my 9th grade English class efforts! I really enjoyed this poem!

    • Nikkij504gurl profile image

      Nikki Wicked 5 years ago from Louisiana

      loved it. a perfect xmas poem or carol to be read or sung for the holidays. a beautiful tribute to our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen!

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      You are most welcome, kingphilipIV. I am looking forward to Christmas, too.

      Paradise7, so glad you like the poem!

    • Paradise7 profile image

      Paradise7 5 years ago from Upstate New York

      Ah, lovely...and so much the epitome of the spirit of Christmas!

    • kingphilipIV profile image

      Ramphil Basco 5 years ago from Iloilo, Philippines

      What a lovely poem.. Christmas is coming to town and I'm very excited for that. Thank you for sharing this poem with us.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, Flora. I have the start of a melody, but I thought perhaps the lyrics could stand on their own as poetry.

    • FloraBreenRobison profile image

      FloraBreenRobison 5 years ago

      This is beautiful and reads like lyrics.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, molometer! I am so pleased you liked the words and images :D

    • molometer profile image

      molometer 5 years ago

      This is a great read and lovely images Elle,

      Reminds us what this season is all about. Family.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Jaspal, it's so nice to see you pop up - can we expect more golfing stories anytime soon?

      anglnwu, thanks so much - I'm glad too!

      gmwilliams, so glad you enjoyed the poem! Thanks for stopping by and commenting.

    • gmwilliams profile image

      Grace Marguerite Williams 5 years ago from the Greatest City In The World-New York City, New York

      Such a beautiful and befitting poem, especially for the Holiday Season!

    • anglnwu profile image

      anglnwu 5 years ago

      This is so lovely, now, all you've to do is set it to music. It would sound so heavenly. Enjoyed the read and I'm glad the Son came.

    • RedElf profile image
      Author

      RedElf 5 years ago from Canada

      Thanks so much, kat! Nice of you to stop by and comment

      ...and thanks for your kind and encouraging words, drbj! I am going to pass it on to a couple of friends who also writes music, and see what they can make of it. I hear bits of melody, but it's a bit of a mish-mash right now :D

      Thanks so much, Jaspal. Glad you enjoyed the poem.

      Seeker7, so nice of you to stop by and comment. You caught what I was after. Thanks so much for the sharing and vote up!

    • Seeker7 profile image

      Helen Murphy Howell 5 years ago from Fife, Scotland

      A very beautiful poem - or song, I think it would make a lovely Christmas song or Carol. It tells the tale in a traditional manner but in a very unique way. This is a very beautiful piece of work. Many thanks for sharing. Voted up + beautiful.

    • Jaspal profile image

      Jaspal 5 years ago from New Delhi, India

      Beautiful! :)

    • drbj profile image

      drbj and sherry 5 years ago from south Florida

      And, Oh, this is absolutely, positively beautiful, Elle. Submit it to a song publisher immediately and you will get residuals forever and a day.

    • kat11 profile image

      kat11 5 years ago from Illinois

      Job well done on poetry voted up