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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Flowers (10/03/05)

TITLE: The Gardener's Lure
By Joanne Malley


The Gardener’s Lure

The seductive beauty of my garden lures unsuspecting victims.

Those who see each emerging bud, each silken petal, want nothing more than to embrace them. They will desire many different flowers to call their own.

I tend to my garden and nurture each flower with diligence to entice you. Through my luring call, the sweet, seductive scent wafts through the breeze, tantalizing weakened fools. I give my flowers moisture from my tainted well, but those who stop to admire and drink are blind to the blackened muck that stagnates at the bottom of my spring. Unbeknownst to them, once my victims are trapped, I embark on my work through them.

Once again, I have found my blind prey.

I am in control.

Immorality feeds my desire. I am cunning and full of pride. I use my ways to catch and destroy. I gloat at each conquest I trap. I know those who are enthralled by the sight and the promise of beautiful things, though those things are encased with nothing but evil. Their hearts are deceived and they are naïve to my ways.

I know the truth. There is no beautiful garden; no glorious blooms. My flowers put forth no beauty nor wholesome, sweet scent. I have tricked all eyes to see with only a vision of lust and I have fooled each nostril to breathe a succulent fragrance that isn’t there.

Those that succumb to my trickery do not see the lifeless, withered petals or dried, brittle leaves that occupy my garden. They don’t smell the stench that rots from the bottom of my core. They see only what I want them to see. There is no sunlight to feed each bud and no clean water to irrigate the soil.

They are blinded by my rays of darkness and fooled into seeing the intoxicating rays of the sun.

You fools.

My days are always as dark as night. Only my eyes can see what’s really there as they search for you through ravenous greed. I have an incessant desire to make you mine.

Come to my garden and feel the sensual heat. Hear my persuasions and the voice that promises all you desire. Only I know my roses are flawed and laced with thorns. The scent from my vines will choke you and make you gag, but you will continue to breathe in my words and heed the oxygen I supply. You want the air from my garden that promises to fill your desires.

You think my breath feeds your soul, but it destroys it. My breath will surely make you die.

You will then be mine.

I know where you can find the crystal clear waters that will drench you with everlasting life. And, I know where you can find an endless supply of pristine, God-breathed oxygen that will fill your every cell. Only He can make you see gardens with petals of silk and buds of promise. Only He can give you flowers you’ll want to embrace. Their beauty will capture your heart; their fragrance will forever fill your soul.

But, I will never tell.

I plan to keep your eyes under my darkened veil and hide the truth, and I will keep them hidden behind my billowy, black clouds where I will deliver silent, ravaging storms into your life.

I will never stop inviting you to my garden where I entice and capture my prey. You will be caught behind my garden gate that you will envision as the white, picket fence you’ve always searched for. The scent of seduction and greed will imprison you. When you’re not looking, I will snare you with my thorns. You will feel no pain – only pleasure. In your weakness, you will let me strike again.

I have won.

I am like a seductress – the dark vixen. I will forever draw you close to my light…the light of evil.

I live amongst fields of flowers and the beauty of your land. You see me disguised as an angel with glorious wings meant to guide you. I will also hide inside of man; behind the smiles of their faces and the deeds they do. Through them, you will look to me to fill your empty, barren soul.

Only the godly escape my grip and my wrath, but even a few thorns have scratched them in their weakness.

I reign…

I am king of your world.

”He will go out to deceive the nations from every corner of the earth.” Revelation 20:8, NLT.

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This article has been read 1065 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Beth Muehlhausen10/10/05
Stirring...wrenching. You have portrayed Deceit very well.
Jan Ackerson 10/13/05
Well-done, and a very creative "take" on the topic. Your writing is seductive and you chose precisely the right "sweet" words to create the desired mood. Masterful.
Anita Neuman10/13/05
"Masterful" is the right word for this. Might I add "Brilliant" and "Chillingly real".
Brandi Roberts10/13/05
This is an incredible piece! Wow!
Crista Darr10/13/05
Wow, this is an exceptional piece of writing, a warning to all of us. You've captured the truth of his deception - led astray by our own lustful pleasure. Excellent work!
Debbie Sickler10/13/05
Excellent entry! I'll think of his gate every time I walk by my own picket fence. :)
Lynda Lee Schab 10/14/05
Ooooh. Very chilling piece, yet filled with so much thought-provoking truth! I noticed that you changed tenses, first speaking of "those" and "they", then switched to "you." Maybe it was deliberat - I actually liked the progressive change. I thought it added more dimension to this piece.
Well done and exceptionally creative!
Blessings, Lynda
Joanne Malley10/14/05
For anyone else wondering, the tense change was deliberate. I wanted to switch the focus from others' and then direct it onto each one of us individually; to hit home. After all, satan is cunning enough to lure any one of us if we're not careful.
Tammy Johnson10/14/05
Oh, how creative. Satan is so cunning and disguises his ugliness in fake beauty. Nice job!
Linda Watson Owen10/14/05
wonderfully dark and meaningful!
Cassie Memmer10/14/05
Excellent! I am reminded of a book by Johanna Michelson, called "The Beautiful Side of Evil." Wonderfully written!
Suzanne R10/15/05
Whew - heavy - but excellent. Reminds me of the Lady Folly in Proverbs too. Well done!
Val Clark10/15/05
Masterful use of poetic language and layered imagery Jo Jo. Well done.
Shari Armstrong 10/16/05
WOW! this has my vote!!
Deborah Porter 10/17/05
Joanne, this was very, very good. Quite a creative take on the topic and really shows how much you've developed as a writer.

You ranked 9th in the Level 3 list, and 18th overall - out of 145 entries. So well done. I was very impressed.

Love, Deb
Kevin Kindrick10/18/05
Truly amazing work. You hit the nail on the head, describing evil - not as overwhelming darkness, but as a seemingly lovely light. Thank you for your insight. You continue to hear from God, and His voice speakse from you piece. Thanks again.

God bless,