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The Holy Virgin Probably had Body Issues

by Heather Milks

Christmas - Christ the Savior is Born - Poem

Wrapped in flesh, clothed in skin stinking writhing

Child-king, Man-God

Breather of the universe

Supernatural meets natural

Lord God in heaven,

Grandfather of the Sky

Breath of life, maker of truth,

Utterly, disgustingly physical

Embodied divinity

And hope? Hope in what?

Hope in infancy, puberty, and a man to come?

Holy Second of the Trinity,

Totally physical, absolutely spiritual.

And I? I look and wish it weren’t true.

If God would just stay up in the sky, maybe I could avoid him.

If he didn’t understand earth-pains, I could run.

The babe that haunts me.

If God can say, “yes, I know” I am caught, and forced to weep.

Man-God born to some kid younger than I,

The holy virgin probably had body issues.

Itching at foreign flaked skin,

Let me leave, let me float away.

Transcend flesh, join you up in the sky.

But if he didn’t, then I can’t.

He put it on, and I want out?

He’s not up there, he’s here.

And I strangle the needs of my being,

Spirit-body, heart-beat of a soul,

I don’t even like babies.

Universal bandaid, one-size-fits-all.

Jesus the Nazarene,

Savior of the Universe

Solution of Man,

Sacred on Earth.

Christ the Savior is Born.


So I haven’t ever tried this. But I wanted to collaborate with someone for a Christmas post. Christmas is a very complicated Holiday for me, with all the gifts, consumerism, and masked smiles all put up against this beautiful, yet very simple moment of birth. Like, birth is such a human, down to the earth moment. Blood, tears, screams and pain. I don’t know, most of the time I just feel weird about Christmas – how am I supposed to engage it?

So I asked my friend Heather Milks to write something, something honest, sincere, questioning to which I could respond with an image of my own. Talking with her I feel that where she’s at in her own faith is a very similar place to my own, and I was really happy when she said “Yes!” So here’s the final result. I hope you like it as much as I did and that maybe it helps you to see afresh the birth of Christ.


You can check out Heather’s blog here. Where she talks about stuff, like her faith and religion and life. 

Your support means a lot to me: it helps me keep going. So if you’d like to stay updated with the webcomic make sure to follow the blog – button is off to the side!

You can also follow my Facebook Art page, Instagram (@jandrewgilbert), and Twitter (@jandrewgil), for updates.

#dealingwithbody #theuncertain #honestyaboutchristmas #bodyimage #bodyissues #poetry #practicemeditation #Illustrationforpoem #Christishere #mindfulness #practiceselfcare #Christmas #wearebody #Christthesaviorisborn #hypocrite

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