Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: The USA (01/08/09)
TITLE: Pictures in the Heart
By Verna Cole Mitchell
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Our hearts capture pictures even more vivid
Than the photos we snap with the camera
To be artfully arranged in an album.
The trees that usher us on our way
Have on their brightest robes,
While the sky, decked out in Carolina blue,
Is entertaining visitors dressed in gray.
We know that these familiar sights will be at ease,
Comfortably resting in our hearts
To wait and welcome us home.
We view the images of a blurred countryside
Through rain that rivers down the windshield.
The oil wells that we see at first
Are not tall figures astraddle the earth
But are like the water pump of my childhood home,
Where several quick jerks and a steady rhythm
Provided water by the bucketful.
The prevalence of towns with Indian names
Reminds us of a people long forgotten.
The land we next observe is flat, flat, flat,
And we can see for miles in the distance.
Windmills lead the way to huge ranches,
Where horses laze behind painted fences.
A dry riverbed lies parched and thirsty in the hot sun
Next to irrigated verdant fields.
Ahead lie miles and miles of changing scenery.
People-less rolling light green land
Is thickly populated with dark scrubby trees.
Fields of sagebrush blow to rest against stiff cacti.
The same landscape, flashing by over and over,
Is just like that we watched in early westerns,
And we think there must be Indians in war paint
Behind the outcropping of rocks.
Giant gremlin power lines announce civilization
Before Stuckeys and KOA’s can introduce
Just-alike houses, resembling boxes
That are stacked in grocery store aisles
And are filled with items to be put away.
The sun setting on a mountain across the river
Awes us with the immeasurable powers of our Creator.
Mountains and deserts direct us to the Grand Canyon,
Where ageless wonders reveal unsurpassable beauty,
So magnificent that we feel we’re in God’s presence.
The rising sun gilds rock formations with a promise
Of the golden streets of heaven.
At last, we reach our destination,
And as we watch ocean’s giddy waves rushing past
To wash the feet of the mountains,
We anticipate that new and glorious paintings
Will be brush stroked onto our hearts,
Till we turn to return again
To that picture nestling close inside our hearts.
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