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Published:December 18th, 2011 18:45 EST
Looking for Christmas

Looking for Christmas

By Ed Roberts

It is hard to believe it has been 10 years since I first wrote this poem. What is sad is that I feel that there as many people today who need it as there was back then.

Looking for Christmas

I went looking for Christmas the other day
We had just had a light snowfall the day before
Yes, it was December
And that magical date was approaching
But something just didn`t seem right
Something was missing
The ingredients were all there
Or so it seemed
But inside there wasn`t that special feeling
And I was determined to find it
No matter how long it took
Or how far I had to go

I started by putting up my tree
This always helps
Seeing it in the living room
All covered with lights and bulbs
Ice sickles dangling from its branches
It was a very beautiful sight
I did feel a moment of warmth deep inside
But no
This wasn`t it
So I decided to do just a little bit more

I went into my attic
And found the boxes that I had stored the lights in
You know the ones
Almost everyone has them
Stashed away in the attic or the basement
I strung the strands
From nail to nail
Nails that had been there for years
Just placed for this one purpose
And once more
The outside of the house looked beautiful
But still something was missing
Maybe this was something
That I was not meant to find by myself
I concluded
So I decided to find a place
Where others had found Christmas
So I got into my car
And drove down the street
To the mall

I walked from store to store
Looked at all the wonderful displays
That each store had spent so much time and effort
On putting together
And, of course, there were the people
So many people
Each trying to decide to get this or that
Not a lot of Christmas spirit here though

There was the Santa section however
Children standing in a long line
Just for the opportunity to sit in the lap
Of a man they had never met
Just to be able to whisper to him
What it was they Really wanted
There was a bit of magic here
For this man did really approach his job
With such a good demeanor
I stood there for some time
Just watching the looks on each child`s face
When it was finally their turn
Yes, there was a bit of Christmas here
But not exactly what I was looking for
And it was getting late
So I left

On the way home I spotted a small church
In front of this church
Someone had erected a life size nativity scene
It wasn`t much but there were several cars
Sitting in the parking lot
And it looked like there was a small choir
All bundled up against the cold
Singing from a small stage
I had to stop and see this
So I did
There was a short line of people
That formed outside the makeshift stable
So instinctively I got in line
In front of me was a small family
A mother, a father, and their daughter
Who could not have been over seven years old
Yes, we`re going shopping dear
I heard the mother tell her daughter
Just as soon as we stop here
To see the Baby Jesus.

It didn`t take long
There weren`t a lot of people in line
The small family stood there for several minutes
Standing in front of the small wooden railing
That the people of the church had erected
To keep their display safe from those
Who would rather touch than look
At such a display

Each of the three seemed to take in every aspect
Of all the different characters
They all stood there holding hands
Yes, this was a beautiful sight
And the nativity scene was not that bad either
The parents had decided that it was time to leave
No one wanted to hold up the line that long
And it was quite cold outside

As they turned to leave
The daughter turned quickly and pulled her hand
Away from her mother`s
She ducked under the fence
And started towards the manger
Before her mother could say a single word
Their daughter stood in front of the manger for just an instant
Removed her coat
And tucked it gently around the figure of the baby
She then turned with a single tear in her eye
And hurried back to her parents
I didn`t want Him to be cold
Is all she said
We all stood there for quite some time
Not really knowing what would happen next
The father reached down
Took his daughter in his arms
And held her very close
I heard him almost whisper
It looks like you`ll be needing a new coat for Christmas

Here I had gone
Spent a whole day
Simply looking for the true spirit of Christmas
And somehow
Like the real magic
That is associated with this special season
And through the actions of a single child
It had found me

Merry Christmas

Ed Roberts