And The Word Was Made Homeless

Awesome Sky

The House of Christmas

by G. K. Chesterton (1874–1936)

There fared a mother driven forth
Out of an inn to roam;
In the place where she was homeless
All men are at home.
The crazy stable close at hand,
With shaking timber and shifting sand,
Grew a stronger thing to abide and stand
Than the square stones of Rome.

For men are homesick in their homes,
And strangers under the sun,
And they lay on their heads in a foreign land
Whenever the day is done.
Here we have battle and blazing eyes,
And chance and honour and high surprise,
But our homes are under miraculous skies
Where the yule tale was begun.

A Child in a foul stable,
Where the beasts feed and foam;
Only where He was homeless
Are you and I at home;
We have hands that fashion and heads that know,
But our hearts we lost – how long ago!
In a place no chart nor ship can show
Under the sky’s dome.

This world is wild as an old wives’ tale,
And strange the plain things are,
The earth is enough and the air is enough
For our wonder and our war;
But our rest is as far as the fire-drake swings
And our peace is put in impossible things
Where clashed and thundered unthinkable wings
Round an incredible star.

To an open house in the evening
Home shall men come,
To an older place than Eden
And a taller town than Rome.
To the end of the way of the wandering star,
To the things that cannot be and that are,
To the place where God was homeless
And all men are at home.


“And the Word was made flesh, and dwelt among us.” John 1:14


(Photo taken by Arti of Ripple Effects, Sept. 2010. All Rights Reserved.)




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If she’s not birding by the Pond, Arti’s likely watching a movie, reading, or writing a review. Creator of Ripple Effects, bylines in Asian American Press, Vague Visages, Curator Magazine.

17 thoughts on “And The Word Was Made Homeless”

  1. I didn’t know this poem, Arti. Thanks for sharing it. I trust your celebrations were quiet but joyful, as were mine.

    I’m in the hill country now for a couple of days, but before I left I got my new copy of “The Irrational Season”. (Yea, for Amazon!) In fact, L’Engle’s wonderful poem, “After Annunciation” is in that book. It ends the second chapter, on Christmas. I knew I had read it before! It was untitled in “The Irrational Season” , and appeared just as an end note to the chapter.

    I’d forgotten how much I liked that book. I’m looking forward to re-reading it once I get home.


    1. Linda,

      The Irrational Season is an excellent read at this time. It’s a treasure trove, and yes, both poems are from there. As for G.K. Chesterton, I’m sure you’d be interested in his writing. I’m still at the discovering stage.

      So glad to hear you get to take Princess (did I remember correctly?) out on a road trip through the hill country. I look forward to your travel posts in the coming days. And, yes, Nebraska would be a good film to watch. 😉 Have a wonderful journey!


  2. ‘To the things that cannot be and that are’ – what a beautiful and poignant line. Thank you for the poem, Arti and a very peaceful Christmas to you and your family. I hope you’ve escaped the worst of the weather!


    1. Litlove,

      Yes, I love that line… especially that it comes after the word ‘star’. And thanks for asking, we have a warm and sunny Christmas day, but my heart goes out to those without electricity in Toronto, and many in England too. Hope you are well and enjoying a warm family time over the holidays. All best wishes!


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