Christmas Pageant

by Claire Scott


I wanted to play the Virgin Mary

of course I did, after all I was only eight


too early to question the whole Christian thing

wise men walking for months with stinky camels


following the cold blink of a star rather than a GPS

ox and ass farting and fuming beside a manger


with a shrieking kid whose father is playing

Super Mario while his mother prays.


I practiced my lines religiously:

Behold I am a servant to the Lord.

Let it be to me according to your word.

How will this be, since I am a virgin.


But Beth-Ann was chosen because of her blond hair,

dimpled chin and obscenely rich parents


who paid to repaint all the stained glass saints.

I was a shepherd in the back row


wrapped in wool scarves and scratchy robes,

eclipsed by the wise men, Peter, Benjamin and Seth,


who flunked third grade.

I could  barely see Beth-Ann clutching


the plastic baby with blue eyes,

looking cocky in her stupid costume.


No sheep in sight to witness bitter tears.



Claire Scott is an award winning poet who has received multiple Pushcart Prize nominations. Her work has been accepted by the Atlanta Review, Bellevue Literary Review, New Ohio Review, Enizagam and Healing Muse among others. Claire is the author of Waiting to be Called and Until I Couldn’t. She is the co-author of Unfolding in Light: A Sisters’ Journey in Photography and Poetry.



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