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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Home (01/09/06)

TITLE: Gazing Skyward
By Judy Anderson
01/11/06


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These old gnarled hands touch unfamiliar terrain
Enclosed in a one-room cell
My possessions from time past now gone
There is no one around left to tell

The familiar longing rises with the morning sun
For the taste and touch of home
Through the endless hours of the days ahead
I will allow my vision to roam

To the farmhouse of youth with the kerosene lamp
And the one-vent heater in the floor
Iíll glide back and forth on the creaky old rocker
Hear the slam of the old red door

And mama will greet me as I run inside
Tired from the long walk in snow
The real hot chocolate flows warm and sweet
As the north wind continues to blow

Home keeps us safe from wind and toil
Papa stays strong and sure
The smell of his pipe, the strength in his hands
His heart so deep and so pure

The man I would marry was simple and true
Like papa he was in his soul
We struggled, I suppose, to scrape and save
Long days would take their toll

Yet those days call to me as a whispered prayer
Together we worked as one
Yellow curtains swung gently in noonday heat
As I rocked our newborn son

He would grow to run through the square patch of grass
Lose a tooth in a fall from his bike
Our home appeared small as he grew tall and broad
And out on his own he would strike

Yes, the sad times are dimmed along with my sight
Swept under the tattered, worn rug
Memories burnished with time turned to gold
And my lips feel a familiar tug

The smile of remembrance, of love returned
Yet I ache as reality does seek
To remind me of all that is lost from my grasp
And the remnant now so weak

The pain can still strike from the day the bell rang
Bringing news no one should bear
ďYour son is a hero,Ē he said with sad eyes
And in two my heart would tear

We would walk and talk away the pain
And together we healed just a bit
The days we shared were quiet and solid
As the table round which we would sit

The sweet last days as I sat by his side
And read him the 23rd Psalm
Were filled with the Spirit as never before
Surrounded by a comforting balm

The invitation of death is sweet release
Embossed in a welcoming light
All of my treasures now heaven doth hold
My loved ones now safe in His sight

My arms reach for heaven just out of reach
Fingers in arthritic curl
My gaze lingers skyward and eyes will soon clear
My fingers will relax and unfurl

Yes, soon I will be there, free from all pain
And there they will be as before
Mama and papa, my husband and son
Our true home forevermore

As I rock back and forth with time reminisced
Iíll hum a favorite tune
Iíll yearn and Iíll weep and Iíll smile as I rock
Yes Lord, oh yes, come soon


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Member Comments
Member Date
Amy Michelle Wiley 01/16/06
The first line threw me off as I thought we were in a real prison cell, but otherwise this poem is a gem. Good job!
Christl Boyd01/16/06
Very touching. Beautiful poem.