Today, by Ethel Romig Fuller
I have spread wet linen
On lavender bushes
I have swept rose petals
From a garden walk
I have labeled jars of raspberry jam,
I have baked a sunshine cake;
I have embroidered a yellow duck
On a small blue frock.
I have polished andirons,
Dusted the highboy,
Cut sweet peas for a black bowl
Wound the tall clock,
Pleated a lace ruffle . . .
I have lived a poem.
We had driven through Cardiff, Wales and continued on up the coast to Swansea when we came across this gigantic billboard, and on sighting it, I felt as if the treasure I’d been looking for had been found. It named the essence of my desire to journey to Ireland and England last fall. Wales has a Celtic charm, so that even the road signs felt like cryptic clues, and Swansea had a waterfront museum that held us spellbound with its tales of rugged coves, swashbuckling pirates and hidden gold. But I believe the Welsh had it right – poetry itself contains all kinds of hidden maps and meanings, narrows our attention down to the very essence of things so that we really see their great value. Hidden truths, like jewels, are cached in the least likely places. Ethel Romig Fuller, in her poem, opens our eyes to those riches in Today, an ordinary day.
Our life can be expressed as a joyful poem, beautifully crafted, rhythm in the footsteps of our days. I’ve been struck by the names of people and places, coincidence, reoccurrence, metaphor, harmony and rhyme as patterns in my life, as if I myself was created for this purpose of joy. Ephesians 2:10 tells us that we are of God’s making, “For we are God’s handiwork (poema), created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”
We are God’s poetry. We are the “treasures hidden in jars of clay.” (2 Cor 4:7)