The Miracle
By Jeeni Criscenzo, Jan. 20, 2017

The face in the mirror was astonishing!
Visibly aged from the face that stared back just this morning.
It was certainly still me,
with all of the familiar memories of my past sixty-five years.
But there were also memories of a past I had not yet lived.

That wrinkled reflection grinned with satisfaction,
like an old tomcat recalling the huge rat it once devoured.

Many years past,
was when it finally happened –
What most would call “The Miracle!”

But the face in the mirror knew the truth.
Her grin softened, Mona Lisa secretive, knowing.
People plant the seeds of miracles
in times of desperation.
Like the grass seed and fertilizer
covertly and cleverly applied by moonlight
to the snow-covered Capitol lawn,
back in the Bush years.
Some called it a miracle,
when a giant peace sign appeared on the lawn that Spring.
Some knew otherwise,
and secretly smiled
that same giggle grin of my reflection.

That was the start of the planting of seeds
that would grow one day into that miracle.
And when a brilliant black man and his inspirational wife
occupied the White House,
some thought our harvest was in.
But it was infested with aphids
and grubs threatened the roots,
proving too weak to survive the drought,
so the people occupied public places
where they declared victory for the 99%!
But we were just planting more seeds.

And then the storm came,
unrelenting in devastation.
Those threatened by inclusion, civility, justice and peace
tore up our fields and laid waste our dreams.

Those were the days of despair and tears.
Many perished.
And those that survived questioned the gift of it.
But they did not suffer in silence.
They were courageous,
not like soldiers charging blindly into battle,
but persistent, like warrior farmers,
sowing their seeds in biting cold and blistery winds,
never certain where their seeds would land
or if their tender sprouts could withstand.
Brave, not because they were fearless,
but because they were relentlessly hopeful.

And when the miracle happened,
they smiled that wicked smile this memory paints
on my wizened reflection.
Knowing it was their persistent sowing
that changed everything.

My dream ends
and I am myself again,
without the memories I had moments earlier.
I do not know what that miracle was,
or how it came about,
or when.
But I know it will happen
because of us, here, today.

I lift my hand in a determined fist
knowing somehow we will persist.
We will never pretend greed and cruelty are OK.

In our fists we clutch the seeds of hope.
We will halt this storm
with open hands
releasing the seeds of Compassion, Justice, Thoughtfulness, Democracy.

And when this dark cloud has lifted,
yes, some will call it a miracle.
But we,
the warrior farmers,
we will just grin a knowing smile.