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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Yellow (11/12/09)

TITLE: Millicent
By Margaret Kearley


One lazy blue-skied summer’s day
We crossed the village green
And passed a thatch of cottages,
A tranquil English scene.
A little further down the lane
Opening a gate, five-barred,
We paid another visit to
Our favourite farmyard.
My daughter ran from pen to pen
Till energy was spent,
But lingered, as she always did,
To talk with Millicent.
Tho’ dialogue was restricted
With the plump, brown-speckled bird,
The hen duly responded
With clucks to every word.
Her line of yellow chicks appeared,
Who knew just what she meant,
And waddled in contentment
‘Neath the eye of Millicent.
We giggled at the antics
Of these yellow balls of fluff
Who tumbled round the farmyard
Till they had had enough.
But at any hint of danger,
Millicent arrived,
And with one summoning deep cluck
Would call them to her side.
The brown wings opened widely –
A flash of yellow speed –
The chicks rushed quickly to the place
Where they were safe indeed.
The wings came down as cov’ring
Protecting them from fright,
Millicent faced the danger
Whilst they hid out of sight.
The true essence and epitome
Of a mother hen, who calm
Would confront any peril
To save her chicks from harm.

Another day that summer
We rushed across the green,
And joined with many others
Arriving at the scene.
The sky was tinged with redness,
We felt the urge to choke
On the all-pervading odour
Of the acrid smell of smoke.
The blackened smouldering buildings
Silhouetted ‘gainst the sky,
The utter devastation
Brought a tear to every eye.
Many worked together
To rescue, help and save
Anything that had escaped
The burning fiery grave.
My daughter reached the hen-house,
The place she loved so well,
And weeping, bent to pick up
Her dear friend’s blackened shell.
But then with great astonishment,
Giving a stifled scream,
We saw beneath our Millicent
A tiny yellow gleam.
With tenderness we took away
The burnt black covering
And revealed a startling miracle
That only love could bring:
Each yellow chick alive and well
Eyed us with some alarm,
Unburned, unsinged, undamaged,
Kept safe from fire’s harm.
I held my sobbing daughter
So closely to my side
And tried to tenderly explain
Why Millicent had died:
She’d chosen, out of mother love,
To pay the fullest price
And gladly given up her life
A willing sacrifice.

If Millicent could speak to us
I think that she might say
You can learn a lesson from my chicks
And what they did today.
They knew just where to shelter,
They knew the place to hide,
They trusted me completely
As they pressed close to my side.
Have you yet found a hiding place
Dependable and true,
A place of utmost safety
To shield and cover you?
You face the greatest danger
If by yourself you stand
You need the Saviour, Jesus Christ,
To lead you by the hand.
He paid the fullest price of all
When on the cross He died.
He calls you to completely trust
And shelter at His side.
His love, His greatest tenderness,
His ever-present power
Will always shield and cover you
In every danger’s hour.

(The name Millicent means Brave Strength)

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This article has been read 971 times
Member Comments
Member Date
vincent lyons11/19/09
Wonderful message. Lovely poetry and the story is told so well. I enjoyed it to perfection. Vince.
Mona Purvis11/19/09
Love the message, love the poetry and love the heart of the writer.
Just splendid in every way!

Linda Wright11/21/09
Excellent in every way... the rhyme and rhythm, and especially the wonderful spiritual application! I enjoyed this perfect poem!
Barbara Lynn Culler11/26/09
What a beautiful and sad story.

Congrats on your win!
Noel Mitaxa 11/26/09
A great bridge from humdrum to heartache, that flows into a spiritual application that carries a sense of surprise without being contrived. Excellent work.
Marita Thelander 11/26/09
Very sweet story mixed in with a wonderful lesson. Congrats on your EC.