No why

The great blue heron,
beloved in our neighborhood,
symbol of all that is elegant and divine,
mysterious in migration, and in movement
contemplative, patient and wise,
stands regally by the pond
with a frog caught by one leg.
It will not go well for the frog.
Beauty has its price.

Why ask,
why this frog and not another?
(This one, loved of every slimy spot
and raspy evening song,
its placid grin, its humorous fingers, this one,
deeply adored even all the way down.)
Don’t ask for why.
God doesn’t choose the food for the bird.
But God loves them both,
and all the other frogs, and birds,
and struck onlookers.

Why do two get sick, and one recovers,
and one dies?
Why does the tree fall on one house and not another?
There is no why.
There is only this mystery,
that to predator and prey alike,
to both sufferer and bystander
God gives exactly the same grace.
Even to the perpetrator of the gravest injustice
and also to his victim
God gives equally infinite forgiveness.

Which is more confounding:
the unfairness of life,
or the constancy of God’s love?

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light
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