Goose on the loose

Image result for goose on the loose

I really, really like animals…until they get in my way.

There is a community of wild geese that have been hanging out in our church parking lot lately. Sometimes they are quiet and calm and congregate in one small section of snowy ground (like a morning Bible study). And sometimes they are loudly honking, spread out all over the parking lot, and eating and leaving geese gifts for us to step in (like a Chiefs Super Bowl champs party?).

Geese are beautiful to look at, but these geese are intruding, right!? They are loitering where cars should go, and it’s kind of dangerous. But I suppose they like church like I do and they just can’t stay away. Plus, maybe we humans are intruding on their turf.

The Pulitzer prize-winning poet Mary Oliver passed away today. Her writing made Image result for mary oliverpoetry accessible to all people, taking away the frilly detail and fancy words that riddle grand poetry from the past.

Her poems walk right up to you in the parking lot, speak a few words of beautiful honks of truth, and force you to look up and around at God’s creative Nature.

So I guess my selfish day needs to be invaded with geese sometimes. It forces me to slow down, look up, and get out of my own head for just a bit. That’s where God is. I hope you’ll see it, too, in one of her beloved poems about geese (yep, God has a sense of humor):

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Wild Geese
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
from Dream Work by Mary Oliver
published by Atlantic Monthly Press
© Mary Oliver
Go out and enjoy the geese. You are loved.  = )

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