boxing day comes

a child was born in bethlehem
beneath a star
but a childhood died

wise men
brought frankincense
& gold

for a babe
who had not opened his eyes

didn/t gather that
brown girl in their arms
& whisper
       hush my darling
it/s okay to cry
you are not alone tonight

a scared girl
carried a god/s fire in her belly
without a choice

watched a young man / she
raised as her own
murdered on a cross
& crowned with

on boxing day
i think about

©  Maxine Clarke, 2008

Maxine Beneba Clarke

Maxine Beneba Clarke is an Australian author and slam poet of Afro- Caribbean descent. Her short fiction collection Foreign Soil won the 2015 ABIA Award for Best Literary Fiction and the 2015 Indie Award for Best Debut Fiction, and was shortlisted for the Stella Prize. Her memoir, The Hate Race, her poetry collection Carrying the World, and her first children’s book, The Patchwork Bike, will be published by Hachette in late 2016.

More by Maxine Beneba Clarke ›

Overland is a not-for-profit magazine with a proud history of supporting writers, and publishing ideas and voices often excluded from other places.

If you like this piece, or support Overland’s work in general, please subscribe or donate.

Related articles & Essays