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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Pastor (11/30/06)

TITLE: Please call me by my name
By Grace Namwandi
12/06/06


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He roamed around the village streets,
a Bible in his hand,
the pastor of the small brick church,
that lay upon a hill.

He always brought a bag of food,
for soul and body too,
a million smiles to warm the hearts,
and clothes to warm the skin

His wife she'd wake at break of dawn,
to roast, to cook, to bake,
to feed the hungry of the night,
her husband goes to seek.

When the sun goes down,
he pounds the streets,
alone on Christmas Day,
to feed the hungry and the poor,
with food and precious words.

Now and then he'd give a hug,
and get a toothless smile,
and a pair of teary, grateful eyes,
would blink in silent thanks.

He came across a certain man,
he hasn't met before,
with greasy hair and tattered clothes,
who pleaded with his eyes.

"I don't suppose you know me Sir,
I've heard of you before,
the generous pastor of the night,
who lives to feed the poor.
My name was Johny long ago,
but now I've lost it all,
I can't afford to own a name,
my soul is all I have.

I haven't heard my precious name,
for let's say ten years now,
I'm just another homeless man,
noone would like to greet."

The pastor reached inside his bag,
for a loaf of bread to give,
and a pair or two of knitted socks,
when the man went on to say,

"For many years I'd begged for coins, a piece of bread, a drink,
but just this once on Christmas day,
I ask but for a smile.
A single grin would warm my heart,
and bring it back to life,
and maybe heal the crippled bones,
that lay beneath my skin.
Another wish I have tonight,
I hope you won't mind Sir,
I need a moment of your time,
to call me by my name."

The pastor smiled,
took Johny's hand,
and held it in his own,
and whispered loudly to the man,
the words he longed to hear.

Poor Johny died that winter night,
with peace inside his heart,
a tiny smile adorned his lips,
when angels took him home.

The night got cold,
the storm got wild,
when pastor walked back home,
with tears streaming down his face,
for an angel touched his heart.


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Member Comments
Member Date
Helen Paynter12/07/06
A lovely story in this poem! How many people drift around our big cities longing to be gently called by name.
Donna Emery12/10/06
A lovely and touching story. The rhyming and meter were a bit inconsistent but it was a lovely poem all the same. You told a wonderful story and warmed my heart. Nice job.
Catrina Bradley 12/11/06
Loved this pastor helping the homeless. The rhythm was very good, it just looks like you missed a few "enter's" I'm sure it's just me, but with the set meter, I was expecting a rhyming poem. Well done and great, moving story!