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Poem: "Nothing Is So Strong" - The Wordsmith's Forge
The Writing & Other Projects of Elizabeth Barrette
Poem: "Nothing Is So Strong"

The general fund poll for the July 2, 2013 Poetry Fishbowl has elected to sponsor both $15 poems and put $5 into epic poetry.  This poem was inspired by e_scapism101.

Nothing Is So Strong

Heroes come in unlikely guises,
show up in surprising places,
summoned by need
and driven by inner strength.

Homeless and broke,
Gary Wilson was hitchhiking his way
through Oklahoma City,
carrying a cardboard sign that said "Memphis,"
on his way to Jacksonville, Florida.

In the parking lot of a truck stop,
a woman was giving birth
unexpectedly and four weeks early.
"My baby, my baby's blue ... she's not breathing,"
the young mother wailed.

It was the homeless man who stepped in to help,
talking calmly with an emergency dispatcher
to gather necessary advice.
He freed the infant's neck
from the tangled umbilical cord,
tied off the cord properly,
then rubbed the baby's back
until she began breathing on her own.

Paramedics who arrived on the scene later
said that Gary did everything perfectly.

The truck stop workers gave him a hot meal
and a place to stay for the night.
In the morning he was gone,
presumably headed for Memphis
(or perhaps back to heaven),
no more than an amazing family story to tell.

This is what it means to be a hero --
to step in when something hard needs doing,
to step away as soon as it's done,
and to understand --

Nothing is so strong as gentleness,
and nothing is so gentle as real strength

* * *


"Homeless Man Delivers Baby" is a true story; this article was the original prompt.

"Nothing is so strong as gentleness, nothing so gentle as real strength."
-- Saint Francis de Sales

I greatly admire the concept of gentleness as an expression of strength, not weakness.  Heroism is about saving people, not killing people.

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4 comments or Leave a comment
From: technoshaman Date: July 8th, 2013 03:18 am (UTC) (Link)
e_scapism101 From: e_scapism101 Date: July 8th, 2013 12:21 pm (UTC) (Link)
This is so cool! thank you!
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: July 8th, 2013 06:39 pm (UTC) (Link)

You're welcome!

I'm glad you like it.
(Deleted comment)
ysabetwordsmith From: ysabetwordsmith Date: July 8th, 2013 06:47 pm (UTC) (Link)


I'm glad you liked the poem.

And yes, that scene in the movie was cool.
4 comments or Leave a comment