• Syria bombed
  • syrian civilians killed
  • syrian refugees arrive to nothing
  • syrians desperate to find safety
  • syrian newborn washed in a puddle

In the cradle of the civilised west
he wrests his baby from the twisted mess...
once home. He clutches her body to his chest
and staggers away in pain and distress.
She is dead. Time to quit this broken land.
Leaving with his wife they move north and west
to europe, cross sea, mountain, desert sand,
he'd heard that there they would be welcome guests.
Months pass. She, heavy with another child
needs to find somewhere urgently to stay.
Thus it's there in Northern Greece, in a field
next to a closed border, her son's birthday.
In the open, huddled, this mother's bed.
There no shepherds, no herald angels sing,
no kings witness this special birth, but yet
the signs are there for those who see such things.
By the rain baptised, a new messiah?
Mired in mud, freezing by the razor wire.

2016 © Ray Souter

Charity for Peace in the Middle East