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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: Park (10/25/12)

TITLE: Gray Park Days
By Frankie Kemp


Why do you write of the dead days in the park?
Why do you linger over barren branches
and gray days
that are no longer fall but are also not yet blanketed
by cleansing covers of crystal snow?

Why does your soul wander in this place
of inertia and fog
when somewhere back there
in the whispers
dulled by the mists
are sunnier times—companions
of laughter and sunshine
and sweet green and vibrant bloom?

Write of the spring times in the park—
or of the thick summer days
when children linger past their bed times.
Write of frisbees and horseshoes and
Independence Days.
Write of hope and promise and the
smart and fancy days
we live.

Oh, I want to!
Oh, I want my words to be gorged
and dripping with refreshment . . .
But they would lie today.

Today is a gray park day—like so many others.
Today I grope and grasp to remember
what it is to laugh.
I know it is there, within my soul—
that park whose trees never shed their leaves.
I have been there before, and I know how to cling
tight to the vision of what will be
and not what is,
But today is still a gray park day—like so many others.

I am not alone.
A still, small voice whispers to me that
the gray park days are
the ones where decay
feeds the soil
and enriches tomorrows.
A still, small voice whispers to me that
the gray park days are not forever.
And I swallow the truth and sigh,
knowing some day soon I will write a different park.

He—He who is my hope
would not leave me like this.
He is my light and my song—
the author of spring.
He would not leave me like this—
without purpose.

He—He knows what it is to lie and wait
for a spring morning.
These gray park days
echo His story and remind me
of the Goodness of my God.
They cause me to hunger
for the giver of the Spring.

Thus, I can be grateful
grateful, even, for gray park days.
Grateful . . .that I do not walk the
pathways alone.

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This article has been read 1323 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 11/02/12
This really touched me. I'm not big on poetry but this piece I could totally relate to. I've been mourning the falling of leaves and the cold weather even more this year. Your piece really tugged on my heart.
Sandra Wells11/03/12
Your poem touched my heart. I have lived through the gray park days, and just as you have been thankful that I was not alone. Springs rebirth will come
Marie Hearty 11/03/12
Beautiful. I was just walking outside yesterday and looking up at the trees and wishing the leaves were still there. Your story made me think that this can be a time of reflection on the three days that Jesus was in the tomb- in the depths of Hell taking the keys back from Satan, so that he could return them once again to God his Father. Thank you for this beautiful poem.

God bless!
Karen Pourbabaee 11/03/12
This is both beautifully worded and brilliantly crafted yet full of faith and hope...a favorite of mine this week which i suspect will do well.
Wilma Schlegel11/08/12
Full of meaning, beautifully written. You are definately not alone.
Bea Edwards 11/08/12
Your piece is beautifully seasoned with grace. I loved the way you contrasted the seasons with our spirits. You did such a phenomenal job describing our resistance to the gloomy dark times which are specifically intended by our Maker for nourishment and character development. Strengthening our roots-right? Well deserved win!
Loren T. Lowery11/08/12
It looks as if we've the same thoughts only expressed in slightly differing ways. Congratulations on this wonderful piece, Frankie.
Margaret Kearley 11/08/12
Oh, this is wonderful. Just beautiful and I can so identify. It touches really deep ground and is a blessing to read. Thank you so much and many congratulations on your well deserved placing.
Myrna Noyes11/08/12
WOW! What a beautifully-written piece with an utterly profound message! Truth wrapped in wise and wonderful words!! :) You so richly deserve your high ranking with it! CONGRATULATIONS!
Olawale Ogunsola11/08/12
A wonderful work. Congrats!
Charla Diehl 11/08/12
This was richly laden with creativity, imagery, and emotion. This piece was definitely deserving of the high placement in the EC list. Looking forward to reading more of your work. Loved it.
Sandra Wells11/08/12
Congratulations Frankie! You deserved it.
Beth LaBuff 11/08/12
This is beautifully crafted and full of meaning. I love the message of hope. Super congrats on your Editor's Choice award and your level ribbon!
Ellen Carr 11/09/12
I love your poem.It is so emotive and moving, and very well written. Congratulations on your 3rd placing in the EC and your win in your level.This is a poem I will read again, and save.
Keith Murrill11/09/12
Congratulations. Soothing and slightly enigmatic read. Until the end of course. Very enjoyable. I could feel the mood as I read which is what I aim for in my own writing.