Friday, February 19, 2016

The Darnedest Thing - a Petrine Poem

The Darnedest Thing!
(A Couple of Whoppers at the Capernaum Docks…Post Resurrection of Jesus)

O. Kris Widmer
February 19, 2016

15 Phrase Poetry Prompt Activity…Creating Poetry With Stephanie Haddad
She wrote on the great catch of fish from the Holy Bible.    I will do the same.
I used 14 of 15 phrases in the prompt.    Indicated in Bold Type
The only line not worked into this poem was “broken dimmer switch.”


Once I was a skeptic, but no more.
It’s the darnedest thing.

See this here “bill of sale?” 
The paper tore long ago on this paperwork
from the Cannery.  I put it right here, with the other receipts;
under this rock, on this here seat
of this ol’ creaky yellow boat.  Then it faded completely -
See?  It once had the total number, the total weight
and the total value - all unreadable now,
blurred from 3 years plus of daily radiance from above.

The proprietor used illegible writing anyway.

“I used these hands and these biceps
to throw this net into the sea.
This lake. Swish.  The padding on
these seats has long since worn away
leaving just these hard, weathered planks
on which to sit, kneel or stand.
We have also struggled with significant leaks.

“Nope.  Nope…
That moment will never be forgotten –
not by Andrew, John or James,
or me,
or anyone in the whole of Galilee!

“The night of futile fishing.
Napping in shifts, curled up on these frayed carpet fibers.
Him on the beach in the morning.
“Have you caught anything?”
“Throw out on the other side.”
The flipping and flapping of those fins.
‘We’ve got fish!’
Then we screamed for mutual aid
from the boats of the rest of the fleet. 
They came, but not soon enough.

“Lots of fish, I tell you.
Big fish!  More than 153, that’s for sure!
Such a happy problem!
The darnedest thing!

I jumped out of the boat towards him.
Squish.  The pudding of the muddy shore
recording my footprints.
‘Depart from me…for I am a sinful man.”

Weeks later, when the Rabbi returned to town,
All He did was speak words, and
my wife’s mother’s fever eased somewhat.
O.K., it eased completely, immediately.
The darnedest thing!

“Say, did I ever tell you the one about my roof?
The darnedest thing!

“Remember that guy that for years and years
was seen in town limping, but then we didn’t
see him for the longest time?
Well, there was that time
when The Master was at my place.
Gimpy’s friends brought him, tearing off my roof,
and smashing my oil lamps.
I shouted ‘power failure…again!’
But then, some words from The Word
sent him skipping away from my door -
forgiven and free.
The darnedest thing!

I’m tellin’ ya this -
in the final moments of my life,
as a fisher of fish and
a fisher of men,
I’m just gonna smile.
I believe in the Christ, the son of the living God.
It’s the darnedest thing!

Poetry Challenge  - Poetry Prompt
February 2016
by O. Kris Widmer
For Stephanie Haddad and Myself

Incorporate one phrase from each section into a poem.
Extra Creativity:  use two or more phrases.

Must use the words and punctuation precisely as listed on this sheet.

First Phrase
1.   illegible writing
2.   swish.  The padding
3.   squish.  The pudding
4.   the paper tore
5.   yellow boat.  Then it

Second Phrase                            
1.   power failure…again!
2.   fish!  Then we
3.   fever eased somewhat
4.   have also struggled with
5.   the final moments

Third Phrase
1.   into the sea
2.   limping, but then
3.   frayed carpet fibers
4.   broken dimmer switch
5.   not soon enough


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