Joseph’s Ladder, an Advent Poem — Jim Burklo, USA

For more Christmas poems by Jim Burklo click here.

I turn in shame, I toss in pain
I cannot sleep: confusion reigns
I cannot sort the wrong from right
I groan in turmoil through the night.

Across the town dear Mary rests;
A baby grows below her breasts.
Good sense suggests that it is mine
But she’s convinced that it’s divine.

Shall I leave or should we wed?
In sweat I writhe upon my bed
Tilll sleep prevails and gives me rest
From this torment and this test.

A ladder drops into my dream
To earth from heaven’s golden gleam
Angels on its rungs climb down
And then I hear a roaring sound

It vibrates fully in my frame:
A voice that calls me by my name.
Just like the Torah story told,
I dream what Jacob dreamed of old.

God came and stood beside him then
And promised offspring without end
Then climbed back up into the air
And left young Jacob lying there.

But God’s promise in my sleep
From Jacob’s ladder takes a leap
“His name will be Emmanuel”,
I hear the sacred Presence tell.

“God with us” now and evermore!
It shakes the cosmos to the core.
For heaven comes to dwell on earth
Through this coming holy birth.

God descends this time to stay
The ladder lifts and floats away.
I wake refreshed, my way is clear,
Assured that Love Divine is near…

Visit Jim’s website: to read more of his writings.

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