Another poem for Epiphany

Magi I by Della Conroy

I've posted two samples of Epiphany verse, one a poem and the other the lyrics of a song. Here's my own contribution:

Overheard in the caravan
while going home by another way...

Myrrh, frankincense and gold -
that's what we left with.
Now we go home empty-handed.

Empty saddlebags on the camels,
hearts full of questions…

Did we leave the presents
with the right king?

One king in a palace,
warm, fine and plush;
the other in a barn
all muck and hay – and oh, the smell!

But did we leave the presents
with the right king?

Oh, I think so!
Remember Herod’s eyes, envy-green?
But ah, the innocence of the child
who but cried and nursed and slept…

I think I saw him smile once!

And clearly, his parents needed the help.

No newborn’s parents would have turned down the gold!

No, they were honest folk…
You could see it in her face
and in the way he cared for her and for the child.
They’ll save our gifts
for when they need them
and mark my words:
they will need them…

But did we find the one we sought?
Was it his star?
What if we were wrong?

His star it was, indeed:
a star of mystery
beyond the wisdom of us all.
We may not understand
but we know
it was his star…

What next, then?
What will we tell the folks at home
of what we saw - and did not see?

And what will they think of us
when we tell of a manger throne
in a barn of a palace?

They’ll likely think us fools!
I wonder, still, myself
if we found anything or everything -
or maybe even more than all…

A trip we won’t forget, that’s sure,
nor him we found
nor those we met along the way…

And the angel in the dream
with warning – just in time!

Now this way home,
another way…

A new way now,
the way of dreams…

So mind the star,
it’s still above…

But fading fast,
so keep the pace…


  1. What a beautiful and poetic perspective on the magis' reflections. Thank you.

  2. Austin--with your permission I'm hoping to adapt your poem into a three way dramatic dialogue among the wise men to begin my Epiphany sermon this Sunday. I'll give you credit obviously. Let me know if that's ok....I pray you are well and lovely poem!

    Peace, John Hudson

  3. Absolutely, John - I'm pleased to know that these words will come to your service on Sunday!


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