HOW CAN THIS BE, SINCE I AM A VIRGIN? Luke 1:34
Your world hung in the balance of her yes or no.
Yet, “She must feel absolutely free,” You said,
and chose with gentle sensitivity not to go
Yourself— to send a messenger instead.
I like to think You listened in at that interview
with smiling admiration and surprise
to that humble child who—
though she didn’t amount to much in Jewish eyes,
being merely virgin, not yet come to bloom— i
n the presence of that other-worldly Power
crowding down the walls and ceiling of her room,
did not faint or cry or cower
and could not be coerced to enflesh Your covenant,
but asked her valid question first
before she gave her full and free consent.
I like to think You stood
to long applaud such womanhood.
Irene Zimmerman. Incarnation: New and Selected Poems for Spiritual Reflection, p. 27, Cowley Publications.
Art: Maurice Denis, The Annunciation,1912