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Sunday, January 29, 2006


by Brendan Somers

It's too far to Bethlehem
far too far with all this sand
in a clapped out car
and Mary moaning in the back
while a so called king
says a cheap cotton sack
contains a gift
and a map
on the best way out of here.

I had a friend back in Nazareth
pitching a deal on crosses
my wife's sister's miracle torn son
is causing a fuss in the desert
while our unborn child
is already too large for this car
broken axled cooler shot soggy tyred
the man who sold it to me
infested with boils
and the busted temple in Jerusalem
spoiling my sleep.

It's always been too far
this sleepy village amongst the stones.
No-one ever makes it here
except by an error on the road
I said it was my birthplace
this dream of warm stables
and Herod's fear
bleeding like hate amongst the stars

But I have never arrived here
never triumphant pealed my silent
entry through the iron door
my wife lost within her sky blue robe
my child lonely on his golden cross
and I?
soft desert soil
and the time pocked stars
the empty purse
and the garden's agony
toll the willing bell.

Brendan Somers has performed in repertory, radio, TV and film in the UK and Northern Ireland; toured in his one-man plays Hess and The Raven Returns; and written, directed, and acted in the plays Wake and Knife, staged at the Latchmere Theatre. His controversial play Bloody Hero was staged at the Battersea Arts Centre, London and gained rave reviews in Time Out, Big Issue, Guardian, Irish post, The Times and The Evening Standard. He wrote the screenplays for Crimetime and The Commissioner as well as films for German TV (Murderers and Skitour). After six years living in the wilds of Scotland and France, Somers now lives in Rye, a medieval smuggling village in Sussex, UK , where he teaches drama to dyslexic and autistic children and lives with adored wife, the sculptress and raconteur Deborah Somers and severely eccentric cat, Mimi.