Ann Spurgeon

Three years ago, my husband, John and I first came to Wesley.

I was in bad shape, physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.

When I retired and friends were asking me what I was going to do in my retirement, a good friend said,

“I imagine Ann will initially spend a good chunk of time just figuring out who she is.”

The past three years, in this place

I have been figuring out who I am. I have been loved, left alone, included, shaped, edified and healed

as, with much needed kindness, people have opened soft arms and invited us in.

I have been included in walking groups, sewing groups, helping situations, work trips, have been invited to preach and officiate at weddings. I have been included in healthy and meaningful ways.

I belong to this place and I am becoming in this place.

Wesley’s people, pastors, staff, non judgmental and ever caring have fostered an atmosphere in which I am learning who I am and what God wishes from me.

About a month ago, I stood at the back of the room at the end of an 11:15 worship service.

I went home and wrote this poem.   It is called “Tableau”.

By Ann Spurgeon
July 28, 2015
To be revised.
Edited by Bea Pavia

Today I wish I were a painter.
Able to draw the softness of eyes.

To stroke in the green skirt
that brushes the white shirted woman
who hovers to hear.

The glow of tinted glass that
colors chairs, rug, and the troubled student
in blue who bends her plain-ish head
under another’s hand.

To catch the exuberance of the young man
A strobe of arms and gestures,
His whole body engaged in joy,
Can paint capture his laughter?

The quick and practiced fingers
of women folding tea trays
wrapped in each other’s words
faces shining up.

Steam that surrounds coffee pots,
the pies sitting on the table, cut into and

The worn red rug,
the hardness of old dark wood
against the morning light.

Today I wish I was a painter
and could make the affections
of my heart
dance on canvas.