It was two days before Christmas and all through the square,
people were shopping like they hadn’t a care.

Ripping through racks of toys, clothes and shoes,
pushing past others, “You gave me a bruise!”

They didn’t see the beauty, the lights in the trees,
they didn’t sense the magic, the love or the freeze.

The day was getting colder, the clouds blowing in,
snow on the way a bitterness on the wind.

He sat there just watching their panic filled face,
but it was due to the racks rather large empty space.

They’d get on their smartphones and search for a chance,
to get that toy elsewhere, success! Then they dance.

Their lists getting longer, their plans fall apart,
guests on the way , stuff in their cart.

Nobody had noticed that HE was right here,
sitting there watching, so very near.

One day before Christmas the last minute shoppers,
saving some time, buying precooked poppers.

The freezing was here now, the bitter was cold,
they thought they were happy with presents to hold.

The food was preparing, the gift wrapping done,
lists almost finished, this time they had won!

Laying back rubbing bellies and playing their games,
but HE was now gone, he had taken their names.

Disappointed and saddened, he left in the cold,
no one had seen him, he’d nothing to hold.

He left empty handed, his heart empty too,
and suddenly he decided just what HE should do.

He rewound the clock and threw a hitch in the gear,
Christmas wouldn’t happen like they wanted this year.

Instead of their lists, they had no one to shop for,
which was just fine with them because they were poor.

They hadn’t a home, no food and no warmth,
they sat on a street bench wondering what life was worth.

They smelled warm aromas of pine, ham and fruit,
they felt the cold weather on their arms and their foot.

They were hungry and lonely, no one in their life,
the darkness of night a reminder of strife.

As Christmas day came they cried towards the sun,
it’s warmth barely there – the present had won.

You lay down on the street bench and closed both your eyes,
exhausted and weary, exhaled your last sighs.

But then a kind dog, walked up like he knew,
laid down by your chest and brought warmth to you.

He gave you the will to lift up your head.
He helped you to smile. “Thank you” was said.

You patted his head, got up to find food,
shared what you found and felt it was good.

You spent all the day, you smiled and enjoyed.
He helped you get through it, he helped fill a void.

It wasn’t the presents the food or the clothes,
not decorations, nor ribbons or bows.

It was finding someone special to be with that day,
sharing God’s beauty in the most loving way.

Christmas means more than what’s under the tree,
its about every life; him and her, you and me.

Whether animal or human, we’re all made from love,
a creation of giving, a gift from above.

What’s truly important – the creatures of God.
He looks down watching, and he just gave a nod.

– Kathleen J. Shields 2015