I didn’t know that Helen Keller wrote poetry until I came across “In the Garden of the Lord.” Images of the light of Christ—captured in “Amazing Grace” by the line “Was blind but now I see”—take on extra power when the speaker is literally blind. When Keller talks of her blind eyes being touched with light and then follows it up with an account of touching fruits and flowers and feeling the wind on her face, one gets that she is experiencing God with all her being.
In the Garden of the Lord
By Helen Keller
The word of God came unto me,
Sitting alone among the multitudes;
And my blind eyes were touched with light.
And there was laid upon my lips a flame of fire.
I laugh and shout for life is good,
Though my feet are set in silent ways.
In merry mood I leave the crowd
To walk in my garden. Ever as I walk
I gather fruits ad flowers in my hands.
And with joyful heart I bless the sun
That kindles all the place with radiant life.
I run with playful winds that blow the scent
Of rose and jessamine in eddying whirls.
At last I come where tall lilies grow,
Lifting their faces like white saints to God.
While the lilies pray, I kneel upon the ground;
I have strayed into the holy temple of the Lord.