Jump to content
Registration -- to join PMO ***UPDATED INSTRUCTIONS*** Read more... ×
Poetry Magnum Opus
Tinker

The Night the Bears Roamed

Recommended Posts

Tinker

The Night the Bears Roamed

While my Dad
          sat on the front porch
of the vacation cabin
a baseball bat across his lap
                     to ward off the bears,
Mamma sat on the lower
bunk in the kids dorm
          with her arm around
                      my sobbing friend,
gathered the rest of us kids
and taught us all to recite
            the 23rd Psalm.

"Yeah though I walk
            through the valley of the shadow of death
            I will fear no evil."
The bears were looming
            so we listened,
"Thy rod and thy staff, they comfort me,”
A baseball bat
            made a pretty good rod
                       against imaginary bears.
"Surely goodness and mercy will follow me",
"And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."
We believed,
            we were safe,
                       the bears were gone.

To this day when afraid
            I remember that night
                       and the bears go away.
                               ~~Judi Van Gorder
Notes: ▼
 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
YarnSpinner

Judy: A wonderful  analogy of how every child should be raised to believe  it's father and mother are there to protect and guide them at all times. This creates a strength in the child to believe; using today's quip..."I've got your back always."

I remember when I was about 5 years old ; while playing on a school sliding board. I leaned too far over at the top to get my leg out from under my bottom so I could slide down the board. I fell about 14 feet and  broke my left wrist. We walked about a mile to the family doctor's office. He...in order to determine how badly I was injured, pulled quite hard on it...I screamed out; "Let me alone I want to go home. My Daddy can fix it; he's a welder."  I had no idea what he could have done by welding it, but I believed in his ability to make things right.

I maintained that faith toward my dad and mother until the day they passed. Now that they are no longer with us; I believe in the MAN above to be there for me.

Bob; YarnSpinner

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tinker

Thanks Bob,  This is one of the good memories I have of my childhood and especially my Dad, sitting on the front porch bat across his lap drinking a beer, vowing that we were safe, he would keep the bears away.   There were no bears but somehow we got it in our heads there were.  My Mom who wasn't particularly religious decided that teaching us the Psalm would sooth us.  My girlfriend was having a big case of homesickness and in those days there were no cell phones to call home.  Gathering all of us and teaching us the psalm worked.  

~~Tink

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
badger11

Love this poem Tink.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
Tinker

Thanks Badge, I just basically told one of most fond memories from my childhood. That night my parents were at their best.  

~~Tink

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
tonyv

Judi, this poem presents things to be observed and learned. The first thing I noticed was that it was a vacation cabin. Whatever the problems of daily life may have been, the family was together, on vacation: happy times. I also observed (with the help of your replies) that the parents were both trying to be there for the children including the guest. I'm not even sure if they understood the ramifications of what they were doing, but (in hindsight) it must have come naturally to them (maybe from their own upbringing) because of the far reaching effect the parenting had. 

From the last stanza, I (re)learned something: that it's normal, from time to time, to be afraid. I know this, but reading it from a trusted source serves to reinforce it. That's something else you've passed on to me, the reader, in the same way your parents passed something on to you on in those moments.

I like how you included parts of the psalm in the body of the poem. Thank you for relaying this personal experience.

Tony

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
JoelJosol

Thanks for the power of description to allow us invisible observers in this vacation cabin. Is there a special reason why the lines are arranged the way they are, follows a certain genre in form?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now

×

Important Information

By using this site, you agree to our Guidelines.