As darkness creeps in, the two women collect their things and head into the house where the lamps are already lit. Mary begins to weave again whilst they wait for supper
‘Does it ever tire you?’ asks Elizabeth pointing to the loom.
‘No, you can be sure of that.’
‘I am exhausted by this heat. I do not suffer any more but the weight is too heavy for my old kidneys.’
‘Take courage, You will soon be free. How happy You will be then! I am longing to be a mother. My Child! My Jesus! What will he be like?’
‘As beautiful as You, Mary.’
‘Oh no! More beautiful! He is God. I am His maid. What I meant is Will He be fair or dark? Will His eyes be like a clear sky or like the eyes of a mountain deer?
I imagine Him more beautiful than a cherub, with golden curly hair, His eyes the same colour as the Sea of Galilee when the stars begin to peep on the horizon.
His tiny little mouth as red as a pomegranate that bursts when it matures in the sun and His cheeks as pink as this pale rose.
With two little hands that can be contained in the hollow of a lily; so small and so tiny.
And two tiny feet that I can hold in the hollow of my hand, softer and smoother than a flower petal.
See? The idea I form of Him is taken from all the beautiful things that nature suggests to me. And I can hear His voice when He cries- because My Child will cry a little when He is hungry or sleepy and it will always be a great pain for His Mummy, Whose Heart will be pierced every time She hears him cry-when He cries, His voice will be like the bleating of a little lamb, but a few hours old, that seeks its mother’s milk and Her warm maternal fleece to sleep.
When He laughs- and My heart in love with My Son, will then be full of Heaven, for I can be in love with Him because He is My God…..and I am consecrated to Him……His voice when He laughs will be like the merry cooing of a happy little dove which is full and content in its cosy little nest.
When He takes His first steps……a little bird hopping on a flowery meadow; the meadow will be His Mummy’s heart laid under His tiny pink feet with all Her love so that He may not tread on anything that may hurt Him. Oh, how I will love My Child! My Son! Also Joseph will love Him.”
‘But You will have to tell Joseph.’
Mary’s face darkens and She sighs ‘ Yes, I will have to tell him….I wish Heaven would tell him because it is so difficult to tell.’
‘Shall I tell him? We could ask him to come for John’s circumcision…’