–Joseph Sleeping, Gentile da Fabriano
According to Matthew, angels do not sleep: in the small hours they intervene, scattering the sleep of others.
They harry exhausted fathers and tip off shrewd men who hail from far away.
According to Matthew, the world is a place where good people’s dreams bulge with warnings, and hope is barely one hard breathing step ahead of tyrants bent on harm.
According to Matthew, there is an inexhaustible supply of tyrants.
Angels have to work overtime; even then children die.
Only one escapes this time.
He will grow to be the sort of man who accepts angelic ministrations in wilderness and garden, but no more intervention.
Even forewarned, he will not flee; not even put up a fight.