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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Conversation (face to face) (10/07/10)

TITLE: The Book Signing
By Margaret Kearley
10/20/10


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We spoke, only briefly,
A minute, that’s all,
A short conversation
I still can recall.
Our life-paths so different
But there, face to face,
We spoke for a moment of
God’s saving grace:
Unmerited pardon,
Forgiveness of sin,
The deep love of Christ
And His dwelling within.
A Brother and Sister,
Though we said no more,
P’raps we’ll speak again
On that beautiful shore .

_____________________________


The thick foggy blanket
Obscuring the view
Brought with it a shiver
Revealingly true.
But weather alone
Is not the sole cause
Of the cold, clammy fingers
That reach from the shores
Of a small rocky island
With history dread,
And tales of despair
Calling out from the dead.
What secrets, what mysteries
That small outcrop has.
What thick mists of time
Obscure sad Alcatraz.


The laughter of children
Off school for the day,
Sun-tanned holiday-ers
From just ‘cross the Bay.
The young and the old
With their cameras in hand,
Pour on to the ferry
And eagerly stand
By the rails of the boat,
To catch their first sight
Of the infamous isle
As it pierce’s fog’s light.
Taken for granted
The freedom each has,
Unlike those of old
Shipped to dark Alcatraz:

Criminals hauled from
The dark underworld,
Captured and chained,
Into Alcatraz hurled.
Paying the price for a
Crime-life of sin,
Case-hardened without
And tormented within.
Despair, fear and anger,
Deep hatred, remorse,
Massed, huddled together,
In powerful force.
All freedom, all choices
Were buried, whereas
Their future was sealed
On ‘The Rock’ Alcatraz.

He sat in a chair,
An old man and grey,
Surveying the many
Who passed by his way.
Crowds soaking up hist’ry
Whilst tracking a course
As freely directed
By audio-tours.
He solemnly watched
The great holiday crowd –
The young and the old,
The quiet, the loud -
He picked up a pen
And once more signed a page
Of the book of his memoirs
Of Alcatraz days.

________________________________


We spoke, only briefly,
A minute, that’s all,
A short conversation
I still can recall.
Our life-paths so different
But there, face to face,
We spoke for a moment of
God’s saving grace:
Unmerited pardon,
Forgiveness of sin,
The deep love of Christ
And His dwelling within.
A Brother and Sister,
Though we said no more,
P’raps we’ll speak again
On that beautiful shore .


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This article has been read 422 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Charla Diehl 10/23/10
Accurate descriptions of that cold, dark eerie island prison. Like how the first and last stanzas of repentance and forgiveness bookended this lonely poem.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 10/24/10
I really liked this poem. It touched my heart. The descriptions of Alcatraz were quite haunting.
Cheryl Harrison 10/25/10
Beautiful. Poignant. Touching. Thanks for writing!
Nichole Hall10/25/10
I liked the rhyming and the rythm your poem has. Good job!