Although I get an e-mail delivery of Garrison Keillor’s, The Writer’s Almanac, the e-mail sometimes gets buried in my inbox, with the result that it takes a while for me to get to read it. That is too bad, since quite often I find the poem selected for distribution to be quite worthy of attention and reflection.
The last one I read, contained a poem titled A Plea for Mercy, by Ann Porter. The poem begins with a question we can all profitably ask ourselves:
When I am brought before the Lord
What can I say to him
How plead for mercy?
Porter answers quite simply: “I’ll say I loved..”, listing her husband, her five children, summer mornings – the sunrise and the dew, the bird, the flies, and a few other things.
As I read the poem (which you can read in its entirety here) it struck me that it reveals perhaps the best answer we can give to the question of what we can say when we are brought befor the Lord. “I’ll say I loved…I’ll say I opened my heart to the world with love.” If we can say we loved, that we lived a life of love, then I’m not sure there is anything else we need to say.