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The Dr. Linda Veldheer Memorial Prize

Nick Sweet
Shepherd, TX

 

While She Slept

She’s asleep, softly settled in slumber’s caress. It’s time for disclosure, time to confess

My doubt and delight as I lie at her side, attempting to give her what has been denied


I whisper her name; she doesn’t reply. I speak to her softly, explaining why

This voyage we’ve started has been a rebirth. My words flow freely, as if rehearsed


We’re a hesitant pair as we try to rebound from ships named Forever, both run aground

We reach for each other surprised we survived; reclaimed, recovered, weakened but wise


Notes of the chantey we sing now are joyous, free from discords that would only decoy us

Crafting the tune is the task that’s before us. Verses come later, let’s start with the chorus


Score it symphonic. Take it up-tempo--melodious mirth, merry mementoes

Of cadence composed completely by chance--destiny’s dictum, recaptured romance


If this is a ballad, skip the cliché, undying, eternal, words that convey

Bond and duration we can’t guarantee, there is only now and there’s you and there’s me


And this powerful pull that happens between us, cosmic convergence of Mars into Venus

But I can assure you no doubts ensue, I am overflowing with love for you


Morning’s first ray of the coming sunrise parts delicate hair that covers her eyes

I offer a silent prayer for the grace to say what I said while she slept when she wakes