Wednesday, December 9, 2009

On Angel Wings

Tonight the girls chose bedtime stories from our latest haul of Christmas books from the libray and we read On Angel Wings by Michael Morpurgo. You'll recognize Quentin Blake's ilustrations from most of Roald Dahl's books. Here they sparely complement the story, but I always like to see more QB illustrations.

This Christmas story is one to settle into and read with awe and feeling. The narrator is a grandfather recounting his boyhood memory of the night he met baby Jesus. After being abandoned by his family to stay and watch the sheep, he is taken to Bethlehem to meet the holy family on the wings of the angel Gabriel.

It's a fanciful and poignant tale and most of all, it's a nativity story unlike others. It's not as sad as The Little Drummer Boy although there are similarities, and it's not about Mary and Joseph's journey. It's about the Chritmas message that rings true.

"As we flew, I was so full of questions. I wanted to know so much about Jesus, this child King who was going to save the world. How will he do it?..."

" 'Love,' he (Gabriel) said. 'He will bring us love, and through love we will at last have peace and goodwill on earth.' "

I particularly liked the way the angels appeared to the shepherds. The shephard boy made stars out of stirring up sparks in the fire, and instead of the sparks flying up to join the other stars they took the shape of human figures bathed in glorious light. And the angels were singing. Which reminds me... of a track I heard on the radio by the acapella group, Chantileer, titled Sweeter Still. I was searching for a good video performance of that song but couldn't find it. So, I'm posting Chanticleer singing Dulaman, an Irish Gaelic song. BTW I'm always looking for new Christmas music compilations so if you have any favorites please let us know.***


  1. Do you have the Phil Spector Christmas album? It's an old classic but has always been my favorite!

  2. The Louis Armstrong Christmas compilation is excellent too.


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