Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: REFLECTION (10/10/19)
TITLE: Mirrors, Mirrors on the Wall.
By David Butler
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But will you like what you will see? That remains a mystery.”
Now, such a challenge, such intrigue I thought was quite within my league.
I confidently sallied through – a reckless step I well may rue.
Mirrors! Mirrors ev’rywhere, staring back each way I stare.
And none the same, so it appeared, for every one looked kind of weird.
Some had magic, elf-like frames, while others bore the strangest names.
So was my courage strong enough to look into this eerie stuff?
Now Snow White in the fairy tale, to match her looks I’m sure I’d fail.
Nor the wicked witch-queen, me, with agonies of jealousy.
But I looked good when washed and shaved (except my mirror misbehaved.
And note: before the mirror broke, it showed a decent-looking bloke.)
The first few frames to me displayed some freaks that left me undismayed.
Some showed me fat, and others, thin. One made me look like Gungha Din.
In some, a super-hero stood, like Superman or Robin Hood,
Or evil dudes like Palpatine, the meanest baddies ever seen.
At most I laughed, at some I huffed. At one, I felt extremely chuffed.
A legendary champion – the kind fair ladies dote upon.
An all-round nice guy. (Anyway, that’s what my employees say.)
Well, it was fun but somehow hollow. Was there something that would follow?
At length I found another room, whose name forbodes some kind of doom:
“The Mirrors of the Soul” it read, “Come through to face the things you dread!”
‘Why should I dread a piece of glass?’ scoffed I. ‘Me, I got too much class!’
With that, I strutted through the door to something I’d not seen before.
There was no roof -- just darkened sky. I saw no twinkling stars on high.
All lighting in that creepy hall came from the mirrors on the wall.
But as I turned in fright to flee, there was no entrance I could see!
So I began to sweat and swear just like a cornered grizzly bear.
In nightmares, I have found one tends to find strange objects are one’s friends.
The nearest screen began to speak: ‘How can I help? What do you seek?’
‘O mirror, mirror on the wall, I dunno why I’m here at all!
So, where’s the exit from this place? Please speak, or I’ll go off my face!’
The kind but glassy voice replied ‘It was your choice to come inside.
But never fear, give this a try. You’ll leave this place a better guy.
To find the exit is your goal? The real door is through your soul.’
So, rather puzzled and amazed, into its neighbour then I gazed.
Above it, fiery words were writ: “Your Ego’s here – beware of it!”
The flatt’ring image shown before was there again, but then no more,
He changed and aged before my eyes. The true Me threw off its disguise.
To my dismay it seems I saw that foolish fabled emper-or.
Without his clothes, his fame, his throne, and no true friends – he was alone!
Emaciated, weak and plain, he strutted like a peacock vain.
I shouted back: ‘This is not Me! Now this is not as it should be.
I’ve done my bit! I’ve paid my dues! A needy hand I don’t refuse!
Encouraging with words of cheer. I always shout my friends a beer.
You’ve shown me this distorted scene. Why can’t you show how good I’ve been?’
The screen went blank, so I moved on. My self-esteem was nearly gone.
The next one’s sign said, clear and brief: “Your Goodness” – much to my relief.
It showed me first as Santa Claus, dispensing presents without pause.
But when each gift they’d gratef’lly open, it was not what they were hopin’.
Just a note they found. One read: “You owe me one for what you said!”
Or: “Sorry! Strapped for cash this year. Instead you’ll get a can of beer.”
I thought the Santa thing was huge, but then he changed to look like Scrooge!
A harsh and calculating face – of my “Nice Guy” there was no trace.
The next was frighteningly bright, and I was blinded by its light!
This mirror showed God’s righteousness! Compared to Him, I was a mess!
But when I got up from the floor, at last! I saw an opened door.
Outside, a cross stood on a hill. The Man who died there calls me still.
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