With these words stirring around in my mind, I imagined a nautical themed Christmas painting, and mused that someone who would be very happy to see 3 ships arrive on Christmas Day would be a young mother awaiting the arrival of her sea fairing husband.
So in this piece, the young mother is at the window in excitement as three little ships enter a snowy harbor (somewhere in New England, of course!) in the background there is a lighthouse, beckoning them to shore. In the cozy cottage there is a humble Christmas tree with a small gathering of gifts and a tea set, and on the wall is a silhouette of her beloved and a small cross and an anchor. Tucked down in a little cradle is her new baby in a homemade quilt.
I think this was one of my favorite subjects to paint, marrying together many of my favorite things. And many of them can be left open to interpretation as you’d like—- three ships, three crosses? The anchor, for a sailor, or a symbol of Christ? Coming home to port? Family love and joyful expectation? Perhaps there is something in it you see that I havent even thought of…..
If you’d like to see a video of a choir singing this carol, I highly suggest this one:
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