A Meditation on Henry Ossawa Tanner's 'The Annunciation'

Yet you do not blink.
In the intimacy of a bedchamber
Your soul is awakened from sleep,
Fragile flesh before angelic brilliance.
Your rumpled night sheets tossed aside,
You listen in peace with your whole self
To the question that will define history.
Holding its breath for your answer,
All heaven pauses.
LET IT BE DONE TO ME
Here it begins.
In such utter simplicity,
In quiet strength, at the appointed hour,
With the rippled rungs of time at your feet,
And the broad lines of history at your back.
At the balance of His grace in your will,
Eve reborn, humanity to be redeemed
Through a child, from a virgin
Whose name is Mary.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

The latest from america

Join us as we offer daily scripture reflections for the entire Advent season.
Elizabeth Kirkland CahillDecember 08, 2019
The congregation's task has always been “the transmission and dissemination of the faith throughout the whole world.”
Gerard O’ConnellDecember 08, 2019
The new film from Terrence Malick tells the dramatic story of the Austrian farmer turned conscientious objector Franz Jägerstätter.
Ryan Di CorpoDecember 07, 2019