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Daniel A. Kemper

Honorable Mention 2007 Utmost Christian Poetry Contest $200
Including Second Prize for Rhyming of $100

Through the windshield, one sees a road and can realize the road, as metaphor, is something that can be "seen through" as it takes each person through this life. The end of the physical road is obscured by night, just as the end of our metaphorical road through this world is also night (death). Through the night we Christians might glimpse The Lord.

Through the windshield, the road

My father used to rub his eyes
about the time stars un-twinkled
and the sky first hit dull red.
He'd run his fingers through his hair,
then pull his collar forward
and sigh whatever he said.
His wire grays were barely curled
and brushed against his ear
and he lingered for a moment—
my only father in this world—
and thought out loud about his load
and stared right past the world,
and something stood out through his words,
through the window-glass, the road.

Through the window-glass, the road:
Through the window-glass, the road
did not always rise to meet him
although on many days the wind
sure did, but that was how he heard
the road, while staring through a rim
of glass, of headlight beams, of dawn.
Yet in the blacktop ribbon that
split the backlit hills, there seemed
a longing still as we went on
driving, sure, but not by sight,
since how could black roads lead through dawn?
Through the window-glass, the road,
hmm, and through the road, the night.

Through the window-glass, the road
and through the road, the night:
so sudden and yet always there—
the wind, the road, the whispered care
then grey went silver, touched his ear
and just like that, no longer there,
I know that I had been his load;
but hinted through the mica glints
and star, and clouds, and city-lights,
beyond all this, the debt that's owed
on whom the faintest light is poured.
Through the window-glass, the road;
yes, and through the road, the night—
and through the night, The Lord.

Copyright ©2007 by Daniel A. Kemper