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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Concentration (07/24/08)

TITLE: Awake
By Melanie Kerr
07/31/08


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I must stay awake
And concentrate
I must not let sleep
Close the shutters of my eyes
Gently extinguish the candle of my thoughts
And fold me a soft blanket of dreams

I must sty awake
And concentrate
And so I sit by an open window
If I can feel a the night breeze
If I can smell the jasmine
If I can hear the ripple of conversation
I will not fall asleep
I will not surrender
To tiredness

I must sty awake
And concentrate
On every precious word that you speak
I must collect and cherish them
Nourishing
A lavish feast, not merely crumbs
Feeding my soul
Not wood or straw
But gold and silver
To build a temple
In a fragile jar of clay

I must stay awake
And concentrate
Your presence here is fleeting
A pause, not a full stop
On your journey
Tomorrow you will leave
Another road
Another town
Another gathering

I must stay awake
And concentrate
And learn to wield the weapons
Of love and forgiveness
In the war that wages daily
Lessons from a master
Who bears his scars
With joy
And finds his focus
In serving God alone

And yet
I cannot stay awake
Sleep steals in and
Disconnects my thoughts
Sending me
Drifting and dreaming

Falling, falling

And then I was awake
With your arms around me

Where are the candles?
Why is the sky glittering with stars
Stretched above my head?
Why do you look upon me so silently
With wonder?

If only I could remember
I was dreaming
Wasn’t I?

Such a dream
You woke me from
Perhaps you should have
Let me sleep on





Based on Acts 20:7-12


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This article has been read 1292 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Yvonne Blake 08/02/08
I guessed it...before I reached the bottom! I like the short phrases, the "shaking" oneself to stay awake. That's how I feel in church sometimes, too.
Well done.
Lynda Schultz 08/04/08
Very clever approach. Nicely done.
Helen Dowd 08/04/08
I can well relate to this person, trying hard to keep awake in a sermon. Not that the sermon is boring. Not that I am not interested. Just that tiredness can be overwhelming sometimes, just as it was to the young man in the story in Acts. Paul did not condemn the young man. He restored him....I liked your fashion of poetry...Very different, and hard to tell a story with poetry...Helen
Verna Cole Mitchell 08/06/08
You have beautiful phrases and thought in your free verse poem.
Shirley McClay 08/06/08
Couple of typos but a very entrancing piece, made me feel the sleepiness that the MC was fighting.