Editor’s Note: DC Service Corps volunteer Victoria Wangler shares a poem that she wrote after walking to the FMS office on a beautiful spring day.


Wednesday Morning (A Robin’s Protest)

By Victoria Wangler

 

The morning seeps itself across the low clouds

like a painter who has muddled the water.

 

Pale, questioning–turning up the east

like the underside of a puddle.

 

Yet, this light still reaches me. Piercing 

through the early chill, the cut of rain

 

as it falls across my face.

If I open my mouth, I can drink the atmosphere.

 

What of the robin? Stuttering across the grass,

opening her beak to me in protest

 

as I dare to pass her grass, bend down

and outstretch my hand to her goodness.

 

She flutters her wings in indignation,

casting me a scornful look. Flees to the next yard.

 

I cannot find reason to argue with her. 

I, too, must hurry along on my way.

 

I, too, must stutter across the sidewalk

and flutter my hand at the crosswalk,

 

sharing a smile with a driver who lets me pass.

(who must let me pass, it is the law, but still)

 

I, too, open my mouth to the young day

and catch its wonder in my teeth;

 

let the washed-out gray-blue miracle

flick against my lips, sting my cold hands.

 

I turn my face up, close my eyes,

and breathe. 


I wrote this poem after a particularly lovely walk to the FMS office on a Wednesday morning. I really enjoy making the commute with my two housemates and fellow office associates, Emily and Joanie. This morning, however, I was walking alone. I opted to not wear ear buds and listen to music or be on my phone; I wanted to completely immerse myself in the miracle that was the morning and the start of a new day. 
 
God is always speaking to us in all that He does and is. All of creation is a glorious reflection of the very being of God–that God exists so vibrantly, fully, and wondrously, and He is alway, always with us. During the twenty or so minute walk to work that morning, I took a deep breath and emptied myself before the beauty of God. I focused my senses to feel and notice every part of my walking–the light mist of the rain, the soft gray ocean of clouds, and the particular mannerism of the song birds that litter the yards and gardens of Brookland. I dropped away my worries, nagging thoughts, and looming responsibilities, and I surrendered to the power of God.
 
This morning was a gift. It helped me reconnect with the truth that I don’t need to run to seek out God. I don’t need to flee to another place or chip away at my heart to make it perfect before Him. I can show up exactly as I am–slightly late for work, hurrying along the sidewalks and stopping to beckon at the birds. God finds me in every moment, every action, and every breath. If I have the grace and patience to slow down and focus on His goodness, I can live in that truth constantly. How truly wondrous and joyous it is that we are never alone–that God, our dear Creator and Father, is as close to us as the light rain and the gentle breeze. That God is as near to us as our own heartbeats.
 
This week, I challenge you to slow down and surrender to God who is always with us. Give up a few precious moments to immerse yourself in His love and His care. He longs to be close to you.