Sample Full Name Poem

for Danielle

By Teresa

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Danielle Marie


God is my judge
Bitter; from the bitter herb, myrrh, which brings forth a sweet fragrance when broken; expands and “blooms” when burned instead of melting or liquefying.

The herbalist was busily grinding herbs for a potion of great import.
The young woman entered, an herb of precious intent wrapped in the edge of her apron.
“This is all I have left,” she muttered, almost unintelligibly.
“What can you give for it?”

The herbalist took the prized possession and perused its many fine qualities.

“This is indeed the finest myrrh I have ever encountered,” he told her, solemnly.
“Perhaps worth more than its weight in gold.”

He handed it back to her.
“I do not know that I have that much gold to offer,”
he added, sorrowfully, for he saw her great distress.

“But I will do this for you,” he continued.
“I will bring you before the magistrate
who has been looking for something grand to use in a ceremony he has planned.
Perhaps he will be willing to purchase this fine myrrh and ask me to prepare it for him.”

She nodded. What other choice did she have?

She went with the herbalist to the magistrate’s office.
The herbalist told the magistrate of her most valuable myrrh
and offered to prepare it for him in the manner he desired.

The magistrate looked at the young woman and asked, suspiciously,
“Where did you find this myrrh, young woman?
From whence did it come?
You do not look as one who would have access to such as this.”

Startled by this accusation, the young woman withdrew,
fearful of losing her one last hope.
Yet no words came to her to defend her ownership of such a fine specimen.
She feared all was lost.

“Well, young lady, have you nothing to say for yourself?
Should I take this myrrh until it is proven to be yours?”

Anguish and courage filled her with equal measure at this thought.

“Sir,” she spoke boldly, not pleading as he believed she might,
“This myrrh came from a tree that grows in the center of my parent’s villa.
I know that to look at me you would not believe such words,
but they are true nonetheless.
A great many years of hardship have befallen myself and my family.
I am all that remains,
just as this myrrh from that one tree is all that remains of my Heritage.

“But that does not mean that this is not my right,
that this is not my own to do with as I please.
Before this, other myrrh was burned at the funerals of all those whom I loved.
This, this one small piece of myrrh, is all I have left.

“You, sir, are not my judge.
There is One who may judge me,
and I have already been judged.

“I do not say what that judgment is,
only that I am alive to come before you this day.
As I am alive, I can only presume the judgment is that I should live
and stand before you to offer this last offering
in hopes it will bring life again to all that I have longed for.”

The herbalist stood beside her.
He offered her a smile of encouragement.
The magistrate was stricken with the boldness of her defense.

“I have heard of such a place sending forth a fragrant smoke among the hills and
valleys beyond.
I knew your father,” he said, softly, gently, in a reverent whisper.
“I thought all were dead along with him.

“Come, my child. Come sit beside me that I may look into your face
and behold the faces of those whom I have loved and lost as well..”

She stood back a moment, unsure of his intent, his request.
But when she looked into his eyes,
she saw the tenderness therein and went to sit at his side.

“This myrrh you have brought to me today,” he said kindly,
is from a tree your father and I planted together when we were young.”
He smiled at the memory.
“We had not seen each other in many years when I heard of his calamity.
I was torn and sore afraid for all of you.
And I am greatly ashamed for not having come to see what remained for myself.”

The young woman gazed at his time-worn face.
She reached a hand to touch it
and as she did, he took it in hers,
gazing tenderly into her eyes as he spoke again.

“Danielle, you are the daughter of my soul.
Your mother was my one true love, but she loved another, your father, my friend.

“You shall sit with me at my table
and be as my own daughter now that you have been found.
You shall be warmed and clothed and fed…”
He hesitated, a lump growing in his throat as the tears formed at the back of his eyes,
“and you shall be greatly loved.

“Herbalist,” he said then,
looking up to see the man still standing, in awe, watching this scene play out.
“Herbalist, you shall take this myrrh and prepare it for an anointing.
This, my daughter who has been lost,
is now found.
We shall anoint her with this herb’s sweet fragrance
and she shall have the gold for which it is worth.”

At that, he reached into a drawer in the table near where he sat
and drew forth several bags of coin.
A few he gave to the herbalist for his craftsmanship
the rest he gave to Danielle,
whose eyes were bright and wide with tears.

“Today we shall celebrate!
Herbalist, be off to your work
and bring me back the finest of anointing oils
along with your family and friends.
You are invited to join in our joyous celebration.”

Danielle looked into her benefactor’s eyes.
This man who had begun to accuse her of theft because of her apparent penury
had turned into her salvation.
It was almost too much to comprehend.

“How can this be?” she wanted to ask, but found no words.
She sat in stunned silence for a few moments more
then stood to say her thanks and take her leave.

But as she turned to go, with no word of explanation,
the magistrate called out to her.

“Danielle,” he said, almost pleadingly,
“Danielle, where are you off to, my child?
Do you not wish to stay with me here and celebrate our reunion?
Do you not, perhaps, believe my good intent?”

“Oh, I do not doubt you,” she countered.
‘I only doubt myself.
How can I be sure this is where I am to be?
How can I know this is what is supposed to become of me?
Only moments ago I was at the end of hope
and now, within the span of a heartbeat,
you tell me you know me and I am to be as your daughter.
It is really all too much to take in so suddenly.
Surely you can understand this, sir?”

He chuckled softly.
“So like your mother,” he answered kindly.
“I do understand, Danielle.
Take whatever time you need to prepare yourself and your heart to receive what I offer.
If you like, you may go with me now to wash and find a clean dress.
But if you need time to ponder these things, I will leave you to that as well.
What is it you desire?”

“I wish but a moment to take this all in, Uncle.
May I call you Uncle?”

He smiled. “You may call me anything you like.
Perhaps one day you will even call me Father.
Until that time, Uncle suits me just fine.”
He smiled once again and took his leave.
She sat upon a cushioned chair near the one she had sat to be beside the magistrate.
She considered these things within her heart.
A tree that had been planted by her father and this man she did not know
had brought her to this place to meet him now and perhaps change her fate.
Her father had told her this tree was special.
Now she understood why.
She had always thought it was because it gave forth such fine myrrh.
When she had taken the last of it to come here,
she had remembered his words
and thought maybe this was what had made it special.
But now she saw a deeper meaning hidden in her father’s words:
This tree was special
because it brought forth the anointing of a treasure
more valuable than even the myrrh itself~
The treasure was the friendship of her father to this man
and what it meant to her this day,
the day she feared to be her last hopeful day upon this earth.

She stood and paced the room for a moment.
Her father’s words sank deep into her heart
and she knew that in her own brokenness,
just as in the brokenness of myrrh
before it can become a sweet fragrant ointment,
she had found the release and place of her coming home.

She went into the hall to look for her new protector
to give him the love he had lost in her father’s friendship,
in her mother’s arms,
and as his daughter,
recover a piece of those same things for herself.
And she was content. ©

4/25/09 Teresa Z. Crane

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