26 DECEMBER 1947, Page 13


AND did the stars fling down their spears And did Orion hold his breath, With gold illuminated tears,

When looking down on Nazareth?

Arcturus and Aldebaran, Cassiopeia and the Bear, Did their quaint eyes in wonder gaze?

Was Berenice's burning hair Ablaze with bliss?—Though now we know That those same stars would coldly stare At burning Troy and London town, As unperturbed as the air?

Yet, one far-centuried Eastern night, An unindifferent star looked down, Leaving its grave accustomed place To lead three kings to a strange town.

And when Spring blossom held the wind It shed cool tears of light, to see The lonely one who loved mankind Nailed to a once proud-flowering tree.

So dark the sorrow-clouded air, Yet seemed it, to that steadfast star, Filled with a still, triumphant hope, As silent winter orchards are. ISOBEL CUMMING.