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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Bookends (01/30/14)

TITLE: The Great Room
By Sandra Hartman



Come with me and imagine, for a moment, that it is 1954.

You stand in a great hall with soaring ceilings and rows of sunny windows. At the end of the hall is an ornate door.

You desire to see what is behind the door and move expectantly across the parquet floor.

What treasures lay on the other side?

As you draw closer to the door; you see that an eagle in flight is carved into the rich mahogany. You place your hand on the cool smooth handle and push it downward and the door swings open.

The room beyond is bathed in light from a large sky light above. Your eyes sweep the room in wonder. Across the room there is a six foot tall replica of the Stature of Liberty. You approach and reverently touch the torch. This torch has held up hope to countless immigrants including your own ancestors that have made your presence in this room possible today.

Over to your right spread across the wall, just like a giant doll house, is a replica of the White House. There is the Lincoln bedroom and the Oval office immaculately displayed.

On you right is the rotunda with it's sweeping dome and next to it the Washington Monument rises to the ceiling. As you turn some more you are greeted with Abraham Lincoln, seated in his chair, watching you with chiseled eyes.

But now, what draws your attention is an ornate book shelf. A light above it makes it the centerpiece of the room. It is ornately carved with symbols of the great United States of America. Upon it sit two large books flanked on each side by George Washington bookends.

As you approach you are able to read the titles on the books. Holy Bible and The Constitution.

You smile as you leave the room, feeling proud of your country. You are permeated with a sense of safety and security as you realize your country is founded on the Word of God and The Constitution.

Now let's revisit this room in 2014.

The hall leading up to it is rather dingy. The sun is darkly filtered through the windows.

You reach the door, pull down the handle, and enter the room.

The skylight does little to alleviate the gloom or lessen the dark shadows that crowd the corners.

The Statue of Liberty still stands holding up her torch. But what is this? Her expression seems to have changed. Does she appear sadder? Is that a tear chiseled upon her cheek?

Next you move over to the White House and peer inside. The furnishing are much more lavish in some parts than you remember. But the Lincoln Bedroom looks shabby. The Oval Office is in disarray as if a giant hand knocked everything awry.

You begin to wonder- “What has occurred in the sixty years that have passed?”

The Washington Monument still stands tall though you notice a crack that has been plastered over.

Lincoln in his chair seems to brood over the room in some dark revery.

You look to the bookshelf and discover that many more books have joined the Bible and The Constitution. In fact the shelf is becoming so crowded that the Washington bookends teeter on the edge.
The situation is critical.

Now that you are closer you see the titles on the books.

Next to the Bible is a red book titled “Rebellion”, next to it a green book –“Darwinism”-- and next to it a cold gray book—“Unbelief”. Next a yellow book—“Humanism”-- followed by a dark volume with a dreadful face imbedded into it—“Lawlessness.”

Wedged between between the Bible and The Constitution -- “Immorality”.

On the other side of The Constitution is a red book—“Liberalism”. Shoved in next to it is “Avarice” followed by “Vanity” a large book titled “Pride”.

Understanding dawns! Now you know why the tear on Lady Liberty's cheek. The chaos in the White House is no longer a mystery and Lincoln's somber mood is explained.

Man's intellect has superseded God's wisdom and changed the whole centerpiece of this room.

The door suddenly opens behind you and a tall elderly gentlemen steps in carrying another book titled Socialism. He approaches the shelf.

“No!” you protest but---he is deaf and cannot hear. He is blind and cannot see as he fumbles the book up onto the shelf and pushes it home----!!

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This article has been read 284 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Brenda Rice 02/08/14
I enjoyed reading this very much. Lots of truth and thought in this article.

Well written. Thank you.
Lois Farrow02/10/14
This is powerful, especially your final sentences. Well done.
C D Swanson 02/13/14

God bless~
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/13/14
Congratulations on ranking 5th in your level and 21 overall! The highest rankings can be found on the message boards.