Annunciation

Written by: Jeffrey Gibson

Ah Gabriel! 
How hard a task was laid on you, 
how hard the trust, 
how hard 
to travel through 
the empty miles of space 
unto a  cloistered  girl
who knew no man, 
to startle her
and race her heart 
past fear, 
and then announce 
strange words -- 
that she would bear a son of destiny 
who would be named
as Yahweh's chosen one. 

Was all the gospeling 
the holy one commanded you to speak 
some comfort to her then? 
Or did her face grow white 
as stone? 
And did her knees collapse 
with all the gloried weight of you? 
Were you to her 
a hollow wind, 
within the tensing air 
a shadow blurred, 
a light askance
just there 
beyond the corner of her eye, 
an echo of a voice beyond the upland hills? 
Or did she know you then for what you are,
God's able bodied one,
God's might,
and look you eye in eye,
and calmly kneel 
in smiling awe, 
amazed at all the golden splendor 
in your wings and wake, 
with gentle handmaid's reverence 
and, grace inflamed, 
said yes,
hands crossed 
along her heart, 
her belly swelling quick with majesty,
reducing you to tears?