Another character in the story — a poem for Advent from South Africa

This poem that presents to us all another character of Advent, one whose name we do not know, one whom we do not wish to be. It is found in Gifts in Open Hands and is written by Isobel De Gruchy of South Africa.

No One Knows My Name

I am the girl that no one’s heard of,
no one remembers, no one cares,
no one even knows my name.
Could it be that I never lived?
Yet that far-off day seems more real
now than many another.

Early spring light, soft and pink on the shutters,
was suddenly shadowed by the imposing form
of a stranger tall and serious.
“Greetings – the Lord is with you.”
And seeing I trembled,
“Do not be afraid, I have a message for you,
you will bear a son and he will inherit
his father David’s throne.”

I stood still as a statue, while my thoughts
whirled and jangled. I was not married.
I was too young. It must be a joke?
Who was this man anyway?
Was I really hearing this word, or imagining it?
He stood waiting and I cried out, “Oh, no,
I’m not the one, don’t ask me!
there must be someone else.”
the light in his eyes dimmed
not of vexation surely, but of deep sorrow.

You know, don’t you, where he went?
And that is why no one knows my name.

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2 Responses to Another character in the story — a poem for Advent from South Africa

  1. Todd Jenkins says:

    Love this! In her book, The Gospel According to Abbie Jane Wells, Wells writes:

    Paul as well as Clinton Marsh and just about everybody else tends to forget that it took a “yes” from Mary before God could “sent forth his son”– … For all I know– for all anybody knows – God may have “proposed (or propositioned?)… through the ages but, as far as we know, Mary was the first one to say an unqualified “yes”…

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