Something Told the Wild Geese

Rachel Field was an uncommonly versatile writer, winner of both the National Book Award and the Newbery Medal for Children’s Literature (the first woman to receive a Newbery).  The daughter of a New England clergyman, Field often wove theological themes into her work, both explicitly and implicitly.  Much of her writing — such as this beloved poem — can be enjoyed by all ages, a remarkable and rare virtue.


Something told the wild geese
It was time to go.
Though the fields lay golden
Something whispered,—‘Snow.’
Leaves were green and stirring,
Berries, luster-glossed,
But beneath warm feathers
Something cautioned,—‘Frost.’
All the sagging orchards
Steamed with amber spice,
But each wild breast stiffened
At remembered ice.
Something told the wild geese
It was time to fly,—
Summer sun was on their wings,
Winter in their cry.

- Rachel Field

Today’s Prayer
Creator God, you made all of the birds of the air.  You give them specific guidance as to when to stay and when to go.  When to eat and when to fly.  When to rest and when to move.  Help us to follow your leading for us as well.  For as certainly as you lovingly guide the birds of the air, you also lovingly guide us.  With thanksgiving for your love and care, Amen.

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