She drove away from the pizza place
joyful in the knowledge that she had been set free.
No dark cloud appeared.
She realized she was humming along,
tapping her foot to the beat.
As she waited for her pizza to go,
Bad Company played on the radio.
One day, she stopped to get a pizza
on her way home from work.
She felt a weight lifted and joy return.
When she awoke, she knelt and prayed
for the strength to forgive.
One night she dreamed of forgiveness
and knew it was a message from God.
She pondered taking her own life
because she thought she was forever broken.
She spent years in darkness and anger.
She was never the same; whenever she heard Bad Company
a dark cloud would descend upon her.
Afterwards, he drove her home
and left her broken upon her doorstep.
Bad Company played on the radio.
He assaulted her in the front seat of his Lincoln.
He asked if she wanted to go to a party
and she said yes because he seemed nice.
The NaPoWriMo prompt today is to write a story in reverse. I couldn’t help but turn each line of this semi-autobiographical story into a verse.
I love to spend time with my friends
We chat, catch up, and share it all
Pick each other up when we fall
I hope our friendship never ends
For hard feelings we’ll make amends
We’ll laugh out loud, or we might cry
You’ll never know the reasons why
Our deep connection, our long bond
Keeps us close today and beyond
It’s see you later, not goodbye
I’m spending the weekend with two college roommates, dear friends I’ve known for 32 years, and so I wrote this poem a day ahead in honor of our friendship and time together. And of course, I had to write a third décima because they are just too much fun.
My road began bright and cheery
Birds sang sweet, lovely flowers bloomed
It would always be I assumed
Then it became dark and dreary
With each step I grew more weary
When I tried to walk all alone
Plagued by despair of being known
Oh grace, you called me back to you
Once again the skies are deep blue
Seeds of hope and forgiveness sown
Today’s poem is a décima for dVerse Poets Pub Meeting the Bar today. (I cheated and went to Bjorn’s blog to see what the prompt was going to be before it is live at dVerse in my time zone). I’ll be linking at dVerse at noon PST. Head over there this afternoon to see what other décimas the pub folks have to offer.
This is also my Day 21 post for NaPoWriMo.
Trustworthy and true
Mercy to my soul
A little elfje for NaPoWriMo Day 15, and while you’re at it check out Jars of Clay and The Blind Boys of Alabama singing Nothin’ But the Blood of Jesus.
Jesus became a servant King
When He washed His disciples feet
This act of love was oh so sweet
Forgiveness His mighty wellspring
As He did sup and share the cup
And with the disciples He’d sing
Earned the right to the judgment seat
When He became a servant King
At dVerse Poets Pub today Victoria is reviving the Octain Refrain for Meeting the Bar. It is a perfect form for my Maundy Thursday poem.
On Sunday He was lauded as King
Hosanna the crowd did sing to Him
On Monday He taught in the temple square
in parables of sons and tenants and wedding feasts
On Tuesday His authority was questioned
by those clinging desperately to their own
On Wednesday He taught the greatest commandment
was love of God, and love of one’s neighbor was second
On Thursday He supped with His disciples
washed their feet and prayed His Father’s will
On Friday they crucified Him, we crucified Him
with the multitude of sins He willingly paid for
On Saturday His followers hid away afraid
grieving a loss they didn’t at all understand
On Sunday, oh sweet Sunday
He rose again, He is risen indeed
A forced grin
a false I’m okay
are all I’ve got
It’s been three years,
three years today
since you left
with me not knowing
not for sure anyway
where you have gone
Heaven or hell
those are the choices
Which did you choose?
At dVerse Poets Pub today we’re writing Quadrilles with the word “grin.” Because today is the third anniversary of my sister’s untimely death-by-cancer, I knew I wanted to write something about that. Then Bjorn threw me for a loop with the word “grin,” which is generally a happy thing. But sometimes grins aren’t what they appear.
Praise and thanksgiving
for my good deeds
can quite easily lead
to thinking I’m good enough
all on my own
I don’t need God’s mercy
to the evil all around me
can inflate my self-esteem
just the same
But when I peel back
the layers of my heart
Peer at what’s beneath
the kindness and goodness
that on the surface reside
I see a different story
I see petty jealousy
that another should have
an opportunity for rest
that I feel I’ve been denied
Another layer and I see
anger and unforgiveness
over a recurring transgression
even though Jesus commanded
I forgive to infinity
Another layer and I see
bitterness and frustration
towards those I claim to love
Yet I hold onto this
record of wrongs
revisiting each transgression
to fuel the fire of indignation
And I see doubt
that God will ever answer
my prayers for change
my prayers for healing
I see impatience
quickness to anger
I see a heart
that wants to be
consoled with food—cookies and chips
with entertainment distractions
and all those things
that do my body and soul
no earthly or heavenly good
As I peel back the layers
I see a heart in desperate need
of a Savior and of mercy
and I wonder at His patience
with a heart that’s prone to wander
I wonder at His grace
and delay of justice
for a heart like mine
The wayward lamb upon a hill
High above the grassy field
Straying from the Shepherd’s will
To the Master’s call won’t yield
Yet the Good Shepherd sees
And follows the wayward lamb
As he hides among the trees
The lamb’s not far from the Great I Am
The Lord pursues the one He loves
Brings him back into the fold
The mercy of the Shepherd moves
The greatest story ever told
A choice once made and acted on
Has consequences far beyond
What I could have ever imagined
On that cold, sunny day
What began as an innocent stroll
Plunged me into a deep, dark hole
Of self-loathing and confusion
Endless and forever it seemed
Even once I finally emerged
And the deepest depression had been purged
Consequences of my choice remain
As fearful thoughts return
To look at me you’d never guess
The doubt and distrust that aim to oppress
Holding me back from what I could be
If only I could change that one choice
But the evil one often accuses
My past disobedience he artfully uses
To hold me fast to a past I’m ashamed of
Alleging God can’t possibly forgive me
Today my past choice can’t be changed
Yet the guilty feelings are gladly exchanged
For the truth of God’s grace and mercy
Granted anew each day