This Poem was Submitted By: Mandie J Overocker On Date: 2005-06-26 02:51:24 . . . Click Here To Mail this Poem to a Friend!

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The God in You

Quiet   Night; Solitude Dreaming of waking life Surreal events that already Happened Pinch me Now I must be Dreaming; Are you not real? I can’t tell but think I hear you  Screaming  Nightmares They are but don’t  Forget reality  It looms overhead, daring you To live And live You must lest you Cry; a lonely death you Will die unless you strive for to Survive The hell That is your life Right now, support surrounds You everywhere. Open your eyes To care And see The ones who hold You close through thick and thin Who love you most, standing strong by  Your side. Reach out To those who em- Brace you in their loving Arms as they lift you up to God’s Strong hands She’ll hold You close if you Allow, let in the love That you feel now. Trusting anew The God In you. Who knows what’s best To heal your soul and mend Your broken heart before you reach the  End goal Nightmare’s Reality  Is true for you who hold Onto the past but only love Will last So love My dear and hold Fast to the love you feel  And trust anew the precious God In you.

Copyright © June 2005 Mandie J Overocker

This Poem was Critiqued By: Lora Silvey On Date: 2005-06-30 00:03:48
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.37681
Mandie, How poignant and how true, if we would all just look within and trust that which is pure and true within ourselves we could have such peace of spirit and mind. However, as you so eloquently put , we all have demons/skeletons that threaten our serenity, our sanctity and those who dwell on them live in a prison of their own making. You have illustrated yours thoughts on this beautifully and in a soft urgent pleading, will anyone hear, I think so. This poem flows easily and is well metered. I hope you find the peace within that you are searching for, I believe you have and that you want to share that gift with others. Thank you for this offering. Lora

This Poem was Critiqued By: Claire H. Currier On Date: 2005-06-27 13:35:56
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.73016
Mandie is the so powerful and indeed 'spirit' filled for it seems that it has been written in one of the darkest times of your life and you survived with the love of those who indeed cared for you. Yes, love is the best healing power of all and the love of God has no bounds........for some may say this is a long poem, an intense read , it is so open, honest and filled with someone reaching out, ready to be loved and to love in return and we know we speak not of physical love here but perhaps the love of a parent, a friend, of a teacher, someone who is in our life and sees our hurt and wants to be a part of the healing process.......good structure, word flow, images, emotions, all of it together and I so love the input of the God in you...........the spirit of the mind is a wonderful thing my friend but the spirit of the soul will make you whole......thank you for posting once more and for sharing this with us. God Bless, Claire
This Poem was Critiqued By: Joanne M Uppendahl On Date: 2005-06-27 09:51:26
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 9.96667
Mandie: I love this poem for a lot of reasons. There are so many that I will try to list them, but they could all come under the heading of ‘hope’ – because love and hope are all we require in life to be whole. I see this poem as a step towards wholeness which, as you have submitted it here for reading and comment, you offer to your readers as well. You see, this is how I think we accomplish healing – as a ‘family’ or community, based in mutual trust and the goals of poetry. Expression of these inner states is such a precious gift to readers and to yourself. But to the poem itself! My remarks to follow will reflect my own biases and experiences, but I hope they will give you some sense of how your poem has great impact for me, and I believe it will for other readers, as well. First, your title! WOW! The “God” in us! The spark of the divine, the emanation of the All in me feels this poem in every cell of my body. Do you know that when we take in a substance, it, by diffusion or other process, eventually inhabits all of our cells? I think a poem does this, too, in a different way. In my perception there is no real separation of mind/body/soul. So a poem is like good Medicine for healing And for joy. You begin this poem in the quietest, most subtle way: Quiet Night; Solitude Dreaming of waking life Surreal events that already (for some, perhaps dreaming of things are yet to be) Happened The long vowels of “quiet/night/life” are intense. The susurration of the word “surreal” suggests a deepening into sleep, but a startling awake in the next stanza. Pinch me Now I must be Dreaming; Are you not real? I can’t tell but think I hear you Screaming Sharply awake, with the rhyming but high-contrast words “dreaming/screaming”! Drama! Nightmares They are but don’t Forget reality It looms overhead, daring you To live To rise from sleep to nightmares, the theta dream state, I think, to full wakefulness and perceive reality looming overheard – a frightening ascent. And live You must lest you Cry; a lonely death you Will die unless you strive [for] to Survive I love the last line from the previous stanza “To live” emphasized with the first line above, “And live” as this is the goal. Again, you use the long, sharp ‘i’ as in “cry/die/survive” these sharp, intense emotion are projected well in this poem. I also appreciate the sounds of “lest/death/unless” as they enhance the poem’s theme with their somewhat muted, short vowel sounds. Your fricative v’s as in “live/strive/survive/everywhere/love” lend a kind of buzzing energy, if you will, and makes the words sink in with greater impact. The hell That is your life Right now, support surrounds You everywhere. Open your eyes To care This is my favorite stanza, above. “support surrounds you everywhere” and “Open your eyes/To care” contain the kernel of life support that is the key ingredient in this work. How can we receive, unless we are willing? Be answered unless we ask? I believe strongly that the Universe, All, God, by whatever designation, hears our pleas, and they do not go unnoticed. At times, the answers to our supplications come from those around us, extensions of ourselves and All-That-Is. We merely have to “open” our “eyes” as you show us here, to see, and you continue below. And see The ones who hold You close through thick and thin Who love you most, standing strong by Your side. You show that we are never alone, no matter how lonely we may feel. Reach out To those who em- Brace you in their loving Arms as they lift you up to God’s Strong hands I did say that S6 is my favorite. That just shows that it’s possible to have more than one. You show how we uplift one another. When you reach out to “those who embrace you” you embrace them and the connection is complete with you, with them, and with God by whatever name we chose to call our Creator. Mandie, I am uncertain about breaking a word as you have done – but it makes the word carry a double meaning. Those others with loving arms “embrace” and “Brace” you – they hold and they lift at once. I think it is effective and original, so I would leave it. I think the important thing here is that you trust your poetic voice. If you revise and decide to change it, that is your choice. If it speaks to you in this voice, you will hear. She’ll hold You close if you Allow, let in the love That you feel now. Trusting anew The God “She’ll” makes specific the person who embraces and holds you in her loving arms, lifting you up. But it is easily generalized to anyone. I can see my own benefactor lifting me in just such a way. Your emphasis on hope, love and especially trust makes this poem sing with vibrant energy. How do we have or accept love without trust? I think it impossible. “Trusting anew” implies a whole self who once trusted and stopped. Perhaps that self was shattered by events, but is now mending from within. Now, poet, you show how we need to trust the ‘without’ as well, in other faces and arms as well as “The God” we know and honor. I think it is wonderful how you lead from the last line of the stanza above directly to the first line of the one below. Showing the connection, the unity. The stanzas separate but connected. As are we as individuals and groups of like-minded people, for example here on TPL. In you. Who knows what’s best To heal your soul and mend Your broken heart before you reach the End goal Very apt internal rhyme of “mend/end” and those very strong words with emphasis as they end with the heavy plosive ‘d’ which has such finality in its music. Nightmare’s Reality Is true for you who hold Onto the past but only love Will last ”only love will last” sums up my entire philosophy of life. You give many gifts throughout this poem, but this is the highest truth, IMO. Holding onto the past makes continuous nightmare, you show us, as we allow fear to continue to rent space in our heads. So love My dear and hold Fast to the love you feel And trust anew the precious God In you. What wonderful words to “hold fast” Mandie! God without, God within, god All around. Never alone are we, not matter how intense the nightmares from the past may be. So far, this is my clearest favorite among your many poems this month. Brava! Well done! All my best, Joanne
This Poem was Critiqued By: Troy D Skroch On Date: 2005-06-26 20:35:52
Critiquer Rating During Critique: 10.00000
Hello again Mandie, or should I address you by your pen name, "Livesintruth"? First of all, I do have a few questions for you. How can I as a critiquer help your vision for poetry? What are some of the things that you need me to do for you or take a look at in your poetry? I only ask these questions to ascertain some of your goals in a more defined way. Perhaps, you just want me to read and comment. I don't know. And I try not to make assumptions when I'm dealing with someone's personal art, whether it's about them or somebody else or just a comment on life. In short, who am I to critique you? I think you understand. Then let me introduce myself. My name is Troy. I live in Wisconsin with my wife Julie and two beautiful children, Gabriel and Zoe. My wife, coincidentally, is a social worker who spent 7 years working with Child Protective Services and 3 more focused on hospice care. Now she works at home and in the family business. We sell everything from furniture to a variety of items out of multiple locations. So we keep busy. LOL! There, I've read your bio and given you an abbreviated version of mine. At least now, I'm a real person. Oh, I almost forgot, you mentioned hiking. I've never been to the White Mountains, but heard they are beautiful. I've also always wanted to do a piece of the Appalachian Trail, just haven't gotten there yet. We have hiked the Grand Canyon 3 times, as well as a 55 mile loop through Glacier National Park in the rain. LOL! Those were some long days. Enough of that. Let's start with your title, as I find it interesting in it's possibilities. First I read it to mean "The God in You" to be comparable to the one found in the Bible, then I read this as a statement to be defined by the individual. I can go along with both of these lines of thinking just fine, though, I choose the latter, personally. The poem you have written, at least to me, seems to be an internal struggle between two people in one. If I am correct, and I'm not trying to figure out your poetry (only show you what I see to support your vision for writing), I see the "God" in one of these people trying to convey that love to the other. Very compelling writing. This surreal nightmare on inside crying and terrified, at battle with the love / God, also on the inside. And the whole supported by more love from friends or family. I also see that even though the two represented as the one contain much wisdom, the decision is still difficult to make. A person can spend a lifetime wearing themselves out on these battlefields of memory by holding them in the present. It is hard to redefine, overcome and rewrite life's experiences. The accumulation of these is what we are. You are so right when you say that no person can tell you the truth of you. Good stuff Mandie. Quiet Night; Solitude Dreaming of waking life Surreal events that already Happened This vision you write of to be awake from memory, yours or otherwise, free from the surreal quality of it all, is described so well in this first stanza. I like your line "Dreaming of waking life". I find it very poetic, and it lends itself well to "surreal". Pinch me Now I must be Dreaming; Are you not real? I can’t tell but think I hear you Screaming This is nice in that the "dreaming" amplifies the "screaming" in rhyme. Nightmares They are but don’t Forget reality It looms overhead, daring you To live Nice enjambment and transition between stanzas. And all of a sudden a bit of wisdom coupled with the irony that "reality" dares you to live. I like the honesty you convey here. And live You must lest you Cry; a lonely death you Will die unless you strive for to Survive Yes, live or die lonely, which to me is the equivalent of suicide. A subject I know way to much about. My advice to people is of course to keep living. Time heals, it really does, especially if you keep focused on the "truth" or the "God" in you. Sorry to be soap boxing, but these lines are chilling, not because I'm a backseat to tragedy, but, rather, because I care about life. All of it. And yes you will die if you don't strive to survive. Right you are. The rest of your poem is, to me, the way you survive the "nightmare", written out so carefully with love and wisdom. I have a chocolate lab named sunshine. The irony is not lost on me, but leads me to believe that even darkness can be transformed into light, if you are willing to let go of the idea of this impossibility. Mandie, I have no idea why you wrote this poem, or if it's personal for you or somebody else, but I would encourage anyone to submit to this accumulated wisdom, not be to be convinced by it, but to believe it, so there nightmares go away. Soon enough, we will be dust anyway. Finding a way to enjoy this time, only makes the next time that much better. A toast to "The God in You", continue to live in truth, Troy
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