One of My Favourite Poems in the World
One good argument for starting a new blog each year is that I'd get to post this poem anew every 26th of March . . .
After the Annunciation
by Eileen Duggan
by Eileen Duggan
Mary, the maiden, walked out in the country,
Telling the wheat what the angel had told her;
The bees tumbled out of the flag-flowers to listen,
The birds stopped their fledglings and told them to heed her.
A woman in blue with wheat to her knees,
Mid a silence of birds and a stillness of bees,
Singing, "Golden, ah golden, with seedsprays unfurled,
Ripen within me, o wheat of the world!"
Mary, bluewimpled, walked out in the country,
Telling the vine what none other must know yet;
The butterflies yearned to her hems as to harebells;
The flowers of the bushes fawned softly upon her.
A woman, gold-wet, with rainbow eyes,
And a border of living butterflies,
Singing, "Purple, ah purple, with tendrils close curled,
Ripen within me, O vine of the world!"
For this post, I used the famous image of Our Lady of Guadalupe because I've never come across any other image of Mary as she would have been after the Annunciation. Yes, we have the Visitation, another favourite of artists, and of course the last few hours before the first Christmas . . . but none of these scenes come close to what Duggan has tried to capture in her poem.
Here, Mary, though still a young maiden, is already recognised as a Queen about to enter her court. (Very Psalm 44, now that I think about it.) She does not, as the traditional Madonna, hold Jesus in her arms just yet . . . but He is already in her womb, and that makes all the difference in the world.
Image Source: Our Lady of Guadalupe