Nativity from a Bus Window

I glance from the bus window, but the crèche is gone,
a trick of dusk light. In the spot I’d glimpsed
the manger, gleaming hay, and small wooden crib,

three wheelbarrows stand. Rakes and shovels likewise
abandoned, heads bent at dangerous angles.
No shepherds loiter at the bus stop, but the nativity


lingers, a persistent shimmer, just out of reach, an echo
of eating mushrooms in Amsterdam, choking down
the bitter stalks, bright with mold. We’d gone to see Van Gogh.
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