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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: 24 Hours (01/27/11)

TITLE: Tick - Tick - Tick
By Anna Moody


Tick – tick – tick. I’d never heard the clock at the end of the corridor tick off the seconds so loudly. Only one other time, perhaps, was the ticking of that clock so deafening. It was the day I arrived on this unit over 30 years ago. Just as it marked off the seconds of my first 24 hours on death row it now marked off my final 24 hours.

At sunrise a barrage of doctors descended upon my small space. All my vitals were taken to ensure that I was physically fit for my impending execution. Likewise they prepared my body to accept the process that would ultimately sponsor my demise. There was low inaudible communications among all of them, but none of it was addressed to me. I felt that I was no longer a human being, but instead, an object.

Surrounded once again by the solitude I had come to embrace, I reached for my Bible. Its pages were tattered and torn, and its text highlighted and underlined each time I found a passage that had special meaning for me. The God I had come to know and the forgiveness He offered was revealed within the pages of this book. It had become my most treasured possession – more treasured than my life itself. It was my anchor in faith, my reference for right and wrong, my direction and my comfort and my hope.

I could hear the dishes rattling on the tin tray containing my last meal as it was pushed down the empty corridor to my cell. How special could this meal be when I knew it was my last? Allowing me to choose the menu was almost a mockery of my situation. I would have preferred to have enjoyed this meal with my beloved wife, but it was for her I was enduring all of this. In a moment of senseless, uncontrollable, misunderstood rage I took her life and now my own. The last morsel of food passed across my tongue as the chaplain of the prison arrived for one last confession and offer of solace. He had taught me there was always hope and he’d introduced me to the bearer of all hope in our weekly interactions.

Once again my meditation was interrupted by the appearance of my attorney. The news he had come to reveal spilled from his sober face. “Our appeal has once again been denied. Our options have been exhausted.” He spoke almost tenderly as I hung on his every word. I slowly released my grip on the bars of my cell and sank back onto my bunk. The ticking of the clock haunted me now as it was an audible reminder that my time was slowly expiring.

I turned to Luke 24:42-43. It is here that God revealed pardon and hope to me. It is what kept me going as I continued to hope for that one shred of evidence that could reverse my sentence. It now appeared that hope had been extinguished, yet the promise of forgiveness remained alive. I would spend eternity with my God.

The tick – tick – tick of the corridor clock soon was drowned out as the steel door closed behind us and I was led to the execution chamber. It echoed in my mind and was believed in my heart: “Verily I say unto thee, today shalt thou be with me in paradise.”

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This article has been read 402 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Lisa Fowler02/04/11
You have given much to ponder and your story was well told. Thank you for sharing.
diana kay02/06/11
great writing and you tell the story with sensitivity and make what could be a rather melodramatic and macabre subject into one with humanity tenderness and compassion.

the clock ticking lends a sense of inevitibility to the whole tale of the events.
maybe this will be a winner but yet again there are so many great pieces in this weeks selection
Nancy Bucca02/08/11
Very well written, and about a very difficult topic. Great take on the 24 hours.
Bonnie Bowden 02/08/11
Very well written.
It's great that God gives us the best pardon ever.