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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Space (01/23/06)

TITLE: Magical, Mundane Or Both
By Val Clark
01/27/06


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Thereís a space in my brain. Contrary to scientific research on the functions of the left and right sides of the brain, itís located just behind my left temple. I feel that itís the size of a table tennis ball, but I can fit a whole world inside it. A magical world. A mundane world. Or both.

Rarely is it a safe place to go.

Often, when I arrive the space is small and empty. I have no idea what will develop as I linger. Or what I will discover.

Just a few hours spent pushing out the boundaries of that space can open up an imaginary world. After a visit, I take time reflecting on what has been revealed and am no longer surprised to find that what happens in that world often mirrors my struggles in this.

I go there now. What will I find?

A pale light glows, pearly yellow like a tropical morning when the mists play games with the atmosphere. A woman floats through the light. She is idealized. Slim. Beautiful. Her hair is dark brown. Her lips red and smiling. A long dress wafts around her on breezes undetectable by me.

I only have to glance at her to know who she is. I hesitate to stay in this place. I am scared of what will be revealed. But there is a greater One at work and I stay at His request.

She is not a ghost. Neither is she a figure raised from the dead. Though she is someone who is dead. Dead but risen.

The last time I saw her face, she lay, yellow skin mummified over her thin frame. Dead in the bed of a nursing home. The room already stripped bare of anything that was hers, waiting for the next desperate occupant.

There was nowhere to sit. Only her metal frame bed remained. I was not in the habit of kneeling then, but there seemed no alternative. So I knelt by her bed.

There had been such enmity between us. So little understanding. So little effort on my part to understand. I see that now and am saddened, embarrassed and sorry for the missed opportunities that my immaturity and selfishness engendered. Yet there had been so many lies on her part, I believed she feared what an honest conversation might reveal. Even as she gasped for her last breaths I tried to say ĎI love youí but the words stuck in my throat.

I know so little of love.

In the light of our enmity I wrestled with those words. Unsaid for so many years, they died, still-born on my tongue. But I cried during that last visit. Silent tears dripped off my cheeks, chin and nose. When the phone call came soon after, I hoped she had endowed those tears with the words my cowardice had left unsaid.

I return to the now of that space and she approaches without hesitation. It is as if she knows that I am sorry for the pain I caused her. Knows I am grateful that she loved me until the end and, in her resurrected body, loves me in that perfect way that covers all sin and casts out all fear.

I truly had not expected to find her here. I thought this issue had been dealt with. I anticipated a story that I could craft with every ounce of skill and inspiration at my disposal. A story I could reflect on, that the One who invented story would interpret to my spirit.

I do not like where this might take me. Swiftly I pull away from this encounter.

My eyes itch with tiredness. I close down the computer and seek the oblivion of sleep.

When next I visit that space she is still there, patiently waiting. She reaches out her hand. Tentatively I place mine in hers. It has been a long time between touches. We walk along a sun-drenched beach. Small waves lap at our feet and I notice that we are dressed in the same kind of shining white robe.

She leads me to a place of blinding white light but it does not hurt my eyes. It is crowded with people; they part to let us pass. Finally we reach a stage. On the stage a Man sits upon a throne.

Mother leads me up the steps to the throne and sits me at His feet. I lean against His knee and look up into His awesome face.


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This article has been read 1157 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Suzanne R01/31/06
So sad ... yet so rich and such a happy ending ... which isn't always the way with life but is when God is involved with people who are His.

I love the line about the One who invented stories.

Magical indeed ... and yet very real and identifiable by many of us.
Pat Guy 02/04/06
Yeggs - this is beautiful and precious. And since it is so special I'd like to make one suggestion - your lead in sentence to this place of revelations. I'm not sure what to suggest but I think if the reader was more prepared for where they were going it would enhance all that was to come. I enjoyed this bittersweet journey. It's really a good one.
Maxx .02/04/06
Wow... this is really touching. Very well done. You have a perfect balance between imagry and story. I think it played quite well. Excellent!
Linda Watson Owen02/05/06
What a beautifully bittersweet creation, Yeggy! I feel like I'm looking into an evocative, living, surrealistic/impressionistic painting. This will stay with me for a long time. You are such a skillful storyteller!
Shari Armstrong 02/05/06
This gave me chills -powerfully written.
Julianne Jones02/07/06
Bittersweet, tragic, evocative - I'm not sure how to describe this piece. But I do know that it touches the reader's senses - and heart - in a very real way. There is something special about it (perhaps because as I write this I know that in less than 24 hours my parents will have left and I have no idea when I'll see them again) and the ending was beautiful. Thank you, thank you for this lovely entry.
B Brenton02/11/06
Wow.
I'm speechless.
It's a HUGE wonder this one isn't E.C.
This was the most beautiful thing.
Awww....
I really wish I could say something but "ahhh" and stutter, but you amaze me Yegs.
This is an artform. A masterpeice. Wish I could hang it on my wall.
Jan Ackerson 02/25/06
I don't know how I missed this earlier, but I was just looking through entries for something to put in the Front Page showcase, and here was this gem! Look for it during the week of March 19. Really splendid!
Patricia Charlton03/20/06
Wow! I am speakless!
Phyllis Inniss 03/21/06
I join with the others in praising your entry. I'm so glad I stopped to read it. It is so different and special. What a gifted writer you are.
Amy Michelle Wiley 03/22/06
This is wonderful Yeggy. Well done. Thank you for letting us inside the "empty place."