Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Gone Fishing (02/01/07)
TITLE: He'll Be Home Soon
By Leigh MacKelvey
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ADD TO MY FAVORITES
and I’ll sit with him while he hacks heads
and slivers sea bass, profess not to puke
when he pokes eyeballs with toothpicks
and chases me round the smelly room,
teasing and taunting, fish eyes rolling off
the picks onto floor to mix with scales and
miscellaneous fish debris.
I’ll play along for awhile, but soon beg respite
to plan next Sunday’s attempt at brunch for two
and pray it will not be another absolutely
perfect day for the sea to surge with fish,
Next Sunday I’ll dress
the table with gram’s china, dazzling crystal,
his murky pot of grind, my favorite latte,
omelet supreme and raspberry pancakes.
Appeal and ambiance not found in finer fare
or fancier functions, at least not in our neighborhood.
You see, he’s promised me church ... and it’s not
the laurels he’ll give for my food ...
but the hope he’ll sit close to me in the pew,
lean his shoulder into mine, brush my cheek with his
warm breath when he whipers how glad he is
he came this time and hadn't gone fishing.
On a usual Sunday,
we eat soggy cereal. I smile as he winks
and claims “we’ll have a fish fry tonight! ”,
collects gear and walks towards the door.
I rise; hold his arm, kiss his lips; wish him a happy day
as I wonder if I should slip a scripture card in
his tackle box; make a bigger case for the choir’s
new director, the much improved music he’d so enjoy.
On a usual Sunday,
I rub shoulders in church with several women who
paddle the same boat as I, labored chants of
“stroke .. stroke .. stroke,” keeping us afloat on the river of faith
each day as we look to God for daily patience and hope for
our husbands who have yet to be caught.
Tonight, when he comes home,
I’ll meet him on the front steps, hug his neck, make a fuss
about the “big fish” he proudly shows; tell him how he was missed.
Later, he’ll come to me, lift my face to his,search to see if I’ve been crying.
He’ll tell me he knows I want him to know my God and he’ll
keep his promise of brunch and church next Sunday.
I’ll slip my hand in his and say, “ Let’s get to bed, honey; it’s been a long day.”
I’ll lie awake, my hand on his chest measuring each breath
as sleep overcomes. I’ll move the other to cover his forehead
and ask God to bless him, keep him, until the time he will be
drawn into the kingdom by the Spirit, through faith in Christ.
And then ... my God will become his God.
I’ll be glad I hadn’t slipped a scripture
into his tackle box, I’ll choose another way
to love my unsaved mate. I’ll fish for his soul with
respect and a life lived in the Light of a Glory who is God.
I’ll dream of raspberry pancakes, church with his hand in mine
and the hope of a big catch to come.
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