God’s Gifts

by Jeffrey Essmann

My way with words and sense of voice appear
To leave God singularly unimpressed.
(I worry that He finds me too austere.)

He also doesn’t seem to think the best
Of me is in my skill at marketing
Or all the trends of which I keep abreast.

My politics aren’t really anything
To Him; my zealotries are but a yawn.
And yet He loves me. Therein lies the sting:

It’s not as if He has His grace withdrawn
Or fatherly affection quite annulled;
Instead His warm indifference draws me on

To force me to embrace the final miracle:
All gifts aside, He loves me when I’m dull.

Jeffrey Essmann is an essayist and poet living in New York. His poetry has appeared in numerous magazines and literary journals, among them America MagazineDappled Things, the St. Austin ReviewU.S. Catholic, Grand Little Things and various venues of the Benedictine monastery with which he is an oblate. He is editor of the Catholic Poetry Room page on the Integrated Catholic Life website.

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