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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Don't Cut off Your Nose to Spite Your Face" (without using the actual phrase or litera (02/14/08)

TITLE: My Golem
By Sally Hanan


He lies there on our disheveled sofa, a painting of abject wretchedness framed with self-hatred. Contempt crawls up my back, while my eyes try to see past this Golem burning in the fires of Mount Doom.

The gold he has chased after—that shimmering precious metal that promised him so much bliss—has reduced him to this.

My husband glances at my countenance and looks away. My thoughts trickle around his form. Is he worth it? Is he worth the effort I must pour into him to make our marriage work again?

This man has thrown his vows of love unto death into the sewer and embarked on an adulterous vagabondage that led him far, far away from our children and me. And now he says he is sorry. Now he says it is all over. Now he wants forgiveness.

That would be too easy. I want him to hurt. I want him to suffer the way I have suffered this long year and more. I want him to know what it is like to be rejected and treated as worthless, over and over and over. I want him to cry over the loss of me. I want him to lie awake at night and come to my house in the morning and see another man by my side. I want him to see that man hug his children. I want him to regret this for the rest of his life.

Holy Spirit flickers, gasping in the presence of such a maelstrom of malevolence.

I see myself in life as it could be. I make my own choices every day. No one can hurt me. I need no approval. I trust no one. I come home from work only to have children surround me, begging for my love. I ache for a supportive hand. I lie alone in bed at night. I am a bitter woman.

Holy Spirit's flame struggles to surge.

I see this man as he used to be, the man he still is...somewhere deep inside. He rests on a chair holding our newborn, contentment on his visage. He lies next to me, his breathing in my ear, his arm around my waist. He stands and laughs with me, rejoicing in my happiness. He musses up our son’s hair as they run outside together. All of these are our Kodak© moments of the past…but perhaps…perhaps…

Now it is my turn to make a choice.

Unseen hands cup the flame, a shield from the mistral seeking my mental valley.

Have I never sinned? Have I never entertained thoughts that traveled from hell to be with me? Have I never known the reprieve of forgiveness?

Holy Spirit’s flame flares in resurrected power.

I walk to him, to the one I had trusted with all my heart—the heart that now lies in vapid weakness—and hear my words fall on his begging hands.
“There is too much good in you worth keeping. You made a choice. I forgive you for that choice. I want you here, with me. We can get through this.”

I reach for him and pull my Golem out of the fire. His grasping fingers do not reach back to the flames—they reach forward for me. Am I truly his precious one again? We’ll see.

Together, we watch the fool’s gold melt into the flames.
Together, we will sweep up its ashes.

Golem is dead. New life has begun.

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This article has been read 990 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Marita Vandertogt02/22/08
Wow - what a beautiful journey through forgiveness - you can feel the MCs struggle as she goes through each step with the help of the Holy Spirit - excellent writing.
Lori Othouse 02/22/08
This is awesome! I love the honesty revealing that everything isn't okay, but it can be eventually. And the sweet, hopeful presence of the Holy Spirit fanning the flame of forgiveness. Beautiful!
Beth LaBuff 02/22/08
As a LOTR fan I understood your title and the actions of Golem. Your MC's lesson of forgiving (because of being forgiven herself) is very beautifully written. She put aside what today's society would tell her would be her rights in order to do what God would desire her to do. This is a good/relevant take on the topic.
Karen Wilber02/22/08
Here's a convicting line -> "Have I never entertained thoughts that traveled from hell to be with me?" Hmmm. I'm going to have to remember that one. Wonderfully written piece on forgiveness.
Patty Wysong02/23/08
What a depth of emotion! I could feel the contempt followed by her inner struggle and finally the hope that flickered with her choice. Beautiful writing.
Lynda Schultz 02/23/08
A wonderful journey of forgiveness. Good work.
Verna Cole Mitchell 02/24/08
You have written a powerful story of forgiveness, the kind empowered by the Holy Spirit.
Laury Hubrich 02/24/08
This was packed full of emotion. I loved seeing the thought patterns as they changed. Excellent. And I love the title!
Jan Ackerson 02/24/08
Oh, my! This is powerful, powerful writing! "Have I never entertained thoughts that traveled from hell to be with me?" Wowsers.
LaNaye Perkins02/24/08
Oooohhhh, this is so good. I love how you used Golem as a reference. Your descriptions are so vivid. Well done!
Catrina Bradley 02/25/08
So much reassurance here of the Spirits constant presence, urging us to the right choices. Beautifully written.
Lyn Churchyard02/25/08
"Unseen hands cup the flame, a shield from the mistral seeking my mental valley."
What a great line! This is an extremely well written example of the way of forgiveness. The struggle, the acknowledgement of sin in her own life and then finally love wins. Super!
Joy Faire Stewart02/25/08
I like the multi levels of the story, especially the leading of the Holy Spirit.
Debbie Wistrom02/27/08
So much truth here. Enjoyed the lines about the Holy Spirit. Very skillful. THanks for the honest insights of a woman scorned, hope this wasn't you at some point...
Sara Harricharan 02/27/08
I love how you use the italics in here! It really adds more to this piece and the struggle between your MC is so real! I liked the title and how it tied in-the ending though, the last three lines were the best and my favorite part! ^_^
Shirley McClay 02/27/08
Wow. Very intense. Excellent writing. and I love this word.. vagabondage
Patty Wysong02/27/08
I was pronouncing Golem with a long o and completely missed the tie in to LOTR--now that I see my error I understand it more and like it even better! LoL
Joanne Sher 02/27/08
Astounding and wonderful and masterful. I love everything about this entry.
Loren T. Lowery02/27/08
"Lord of the Rings" is one of my favorites and you did it justice with your allegory to Golem. For me, one of the most telling moments came from this comment "You made a choice. I forgive you for that choice.” Understanding this, though difficult at times to accept, is or should I say, can be, so true.
Joshua Janoski02/27/08
I really liked the progression of the Holy Spirit intertwined with the woman's thoughts. Beautifully written.
Holly Westefeld02/27/08
I like the way you show how good memories are a part of hanging on for healing. This entry may or may not be fiction, but God's desire to restore wounded marriages is true. All that is needed are two humble and forgiving people, sometimes only one to start.