Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Prize Winner

I submitted this poem to a Journal Contest in Pennsylvania in 2006. I had never done that before and figured it was a waste of time. But what the heck, I went ahead and sent three of my works to them. A couple months later, I received an email from the Editor, informing me I had won First Prize and publication in the Inspirit Summer 2007 Edition, along with a $500 check. I was so surprised! Then they asked for permission to publish a second one in their Autumn 2007 volumn. Wow!

Inspirit is The Literary Journal of Baughman Methodist United Methodist Church of New Cumberland, Pennsylvania, and publishes poetry and essays that examine and explore the issues of faith, in it's many paths, variations and facets.

This is the poem I wrote. I have waited these many months to post it here, because it represents the saddest and longest day of my life. And while I am proud of the work I did on this and all, it is still difficult.

The Sorority No One Wishes To Join

They arrived one at a time,
bearing a casserole dish
or cake in their hands;
these women who have lost a child
came to console a new member.
The dormant debt of compassion
from their own past needed
fulfillment; and so,
with tear-stained cheeks,
those dignified,
Christic women enfolded
her in their arms - knowing -
all that could be done was
to come and to hold and to weep,
to shed their tears together
in compassionate relief.

When she's ready, she too
will make initiation calls,
holding cake or casserole at
the door in her outstretched hands,
discovering the aching pain
for her child assuaged when she
graces another's world of grief
with the inherent hope
her presence may bring;
then her pain will subside.
Giving freely what was freely
given, she pays her dues.
Once given the consolation
of shared grief, these survivors
go as God's hands and feet.

~Tami Vrbas~
c. 2006


Shaye said...

WOW Tami. That's just beautiful. I don't comment much, but I'm a regular reader from Chadron. Thank you for your words!

Tami Vrbas said...

Hi Shaye -- Chadron, huh? Well, welcome and I'm glad it touched you. I thank you for your comment, it keeps me "at the page" writing. I can go a long time on a word or two of praise. Thanks for reading. Every writer needs readers!