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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Illustrate the meaning of "Every Dark Cloud has a Silver Lining" (without using the actual phrase or literal example). (02/28/08)

TITLE: Defiance
By Jan Ackerson


I wrap myself in night, that velvet shroud—
I have no need for brazen light of day,
Nor little stars shall charm me. I have vowed
To dwell henceforth in sullen shades of grey.
No food is savory to me—no taste
Shall linger on my tongue. No melodies
Can penetrate the fortress I have placed
Around my icy heart. ‘Tis a disease
That stifles every sense. I cannot feel
A tender touch, compassion, mercy, grace—
And I defy capricious God to heal
When I have turned my back to His embrace.
Yet—through the leaden sky—a golden beam
Shoots forth. I spurned my God, but He found me.

This sonnet is dedicated to all those who, like me, have found themselves mired in depression’s dark night. May you find the truth of Isaiah 55:13: "Instead of the thorn bush will grow the pine tree, and instead of briers the myrtle will grow."

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This article has been read 1493 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Leigh MacKelvey03/06/08
A sonnet beautifully done! The meaning is awesome and true. The enjambment in verse really adds to the uniqueness of your sonnet. A master piece of poetry!
Sheri Gordon03/06/08
Wow. You captured where I lived for too long. This is such a beautiful picture of hope for those suffocating in despair. And the thing I really like is, you don't minimize or try to "fix" the feelings of hopelessness--you simply offer a glimmer of hope at the end. Excellent job with the topic.
Lynda Schultz 03/06/08
Aren't you glad grace doesn't depend on us? He loved us while we were still His enemies. Well done.
Sharlyn Guthrie03/08/08
This is an excellent example of speaking volumes in just a few words. Wonderful!
Dolores Stohler03/09/08
Shakespeare is alive and well! Whoever you are, you have captured the beauty and style of the sonnet form. Wonderful poem!
Catrina Bradley 03/09/08
A perfect description of the dark cloud of depression, and the comfort of knowing Jesus is there always.
Seema Bagai 03/10/08
Beautiful poem. This spoke to my heart.
Karen Wilber03/10/08
You really captured the sensory aspect of depression well - no taste, no touch, no sight. And you wrote a sonnet that is lyrical and powerful in its wording. Well done.
Patty Wysong03/10/08
Thank God for His everlasting love that pursues us and draws us back!
Debbie Wistrom03/11/08
How wonderful when He breaks down our walls. Thanks for sharing from your heart.
Debbie Wistrom03/11/08
How wonderful when He breaks down our walls. Thanks for sharing from your heart.
Betty Castleberry03/11/08
Beautiful, lyrical. Well done.
Henry Clemmons03/11/08
I would have said extraordinary, if it wasn't for the "icy heart" line.(sorry). That said, 99.9 percent of your entry was pure inspiration and appreciation for me. Thank you for sharing and trusting us with your heart.
jodie banner03/12/08
If not before, then you are definately a poet now. I found myself looking upwards for that beam of light.
LauraLee Shaw03/12/08
Well, I know NOTHING about this style of writing, but it rang beautifully in my heart and mind. I admire the fact that you are stretching yourself and trying new things. :)
Debbie Roome 03/12/08
I love the first two lines. The word mature comes to mind - wonderful imagery and choice of words and skilfully written.
Verna Cole Mitchell 03/12/08
This is a masterpiece of a sonnet--a keeper.
Dianne Janak03/12/08
Yes...depression feels as if during that time, no one could possibly understand your feelings, but a poem like this shared with others can break through that illusion and bring comfort.. there is hope.. others have endured and passed through to the other side.. Bravo.. masterpiece!
Mandy White03/12/08
I'm no expert on poetry, but I am an expert on battling depression. Your words spoke to me. Thanks.
Sara Harricharan 03/12/08
"Shoots forth. I spurned my God, but He found me."
I LOVE your last line. It fits so much of what I feel like sometimes.
Celeste Ammirata03/12/08
This is moving story on the darkness of depression. I love the ending, where God's beam of light shines through. Wonderful!
TJ Nickel03/12/08
Loved it.
Joanne Sher 03/12/08
I also LOVE the last line. You have also painted a "just right" portrait of depression. Very nicely done, Jan.
Sherry Castelluccio 03/12/08
Loved this. I suffer (suffered) from depression as well. I understand the dark hold it can have. It's so amazing that despite me, God still moves. Beautiful poem, my dear.
Joshua Janoski03/12/08
I am not a poet, so I don't want to critique this. I have faced depression though, and so I could relate to the subject matter in a deep way.

Isn't it wonderful how God can always pull us out, even when we are in the deepest pits of despair?

I enjoyed this. Thank you for sharing.