The Preacher and the Music Director’s Wife


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The preacher was arrogant to the younger crowd,

But to those with deep pockets, he appeared less proud,

Damon’s sermons were powerful, he turned them up by degrees,

He was clearly annoyed by those who dared defy his decrees,

Feared and secretly hated by the rest of the church staff,

Except by Samantha, who would mock him and laugh,

She found reasons to tease him, to watch him turn red,

Yet she’d bake him cookies and bring him sweet bread,

I wasn’t  sure but I thought she admired his position of power,

She was beautiful, smart, and already in full flower,

She was open to all who wanted to know about her family tiffs,

And frequently proclaimed she had all of the spiritual gifts,

Her husband, the music director, turned a blind eye,

Adam wanted to confront her, but didn’t dare try,

It was clear she was restless, and loved him no more,

She wanted to hurt him deeply by declaring a spiritual war,

Adam was persistent and continued to go out of his way,

To give her thoughtful presents and constantly say,

“I love you,” but she ignored him each and every time,

She hated his goodness and treated him like swine,

Adam was special and crowds showed to hear him sing,

His voice resonated, entertained, as he sang to his king,

Why Samantha did not feel the power, no one really knew,

The more the crowds loved him the more her hatred grew,

Samantha often said, “I want to go somewhere without you,”

Adam didn’t take her seriously because his love was true,

His rebuttal,“I can never leave here, I’m treated like a son,”

And in her heart Samantha knew, her time with him was done,

The preacher, on the other hand, was abusive to his wife,

 Damon was heard to say, “A wife must obey all her life,”

Mary would murmur quietly, “I’m sorry, much harder I’ll try,”

Sometimes Mary would show up with bruises, black and blue,

She always covered for him, but I knew her words were untrue,

“It was my fault,” she might say, “I was not being loyal” or “I fell,”

It was my opinion that the preacher had a one way ticket to hell,

One day when Damon thought he was alone with his wife,

“You disagreed with me! That’s disloyal!” his voice cutting like a knife,

He berated her at length and ended the tirade with a slap,

“Now clean up this mess,” he snapped, as her nose bled onto her lap,

She noticed me in the shadows, “Shhhh. You’ll only make it worse,”

I couldn’t just accuse him. I needed more than chapter and verse,

Damon’s temper was legendary but church officials looked the other way,

As long as the church was growing Damon would have his say,

To Damon, all wives and daughters were part of a game,

It was rumored that they were afraid when he called them by name,

Except for Samantha who talked as if she cared about nothing,

She scared him with her reckless talk about acting and dancing,

Always in short skirts and low cut blouses, she sat in the front pew,

Damon often stammered and sputtered because of the view,

When some of the elderly women criticized her just a bit,

She said, “God gave it to me and the devil can’t make me hide it.”

It didn’t take long for Damon to succumb to her charms,

At night he dreamed of holding her tightly in his arms,

Tossing and turning, he was restless and could find no relief,

The next day he confronted her, “Your rebellion has caused me grief,

Did you not learn a lesson from Delilah and Jezebel?

If you don’t mend your ways, you’re going straight to hell,”

He hesitated, “You need to see me for counseling so we can talk,”

She laughed at him, “You’d like to have me behind a door that locks,”

“If you were in my house for a week,” he sputtered, “You’d learn,”

“You’ve got a little bad boy in you,” she said, “You’d have to earn,

Any chance you got with me, so talk to my husband, then we’ll see,”

What chance did he have to convince her husband to agree?

After one of his sermons he decided to talk to Adam, man to man,

“You’re neglecting your duty, she’s not under your command,

She runs your house, I don’t think you have much to say,

If she was under my roof, just for a week, I’d get her to obey,

We might be happier if we switched partners for awhile,

I’d tame your wife and she’d come back with a smile,”

Adam was shocked, he couldn’t believe what he had heard,

“I couldn’t do that,” he muttered, “it’s going against the Word,”

Samantha chuckled, “You are pathetic and can’t satisfy me,

I wouldn’t have to be near you, for one week I’d be free,”

Adam was infuriated, he didn’t like Samantha’s retort,

But he made a mistake when he turned to Mary for support,

Mary was still bruised from Damon’s last series of blows,

To be away from Damon she would have kissed the devil’s toes,

Mary said, “Your wife will learn to appreciate loving kindness in a man,

Now, she’s young and blind, she really doesn’t understand,”

That made sense to Adam.  His wife had never given him respect,

He knew he loved her and would give her everything without neglect,

For that reason, he wavered, for a week he could let her go,

But in the back of his mind was a small voice saying, “No, No, NO!”

What choice did he have when all three stared him down?

But his heart refused to give in, he was honor bound,

“This is all wrong. Samantha will have to make her own choice,”

“And you, Damon, have been listening to the devil’s voice!”

Angrily Adam turned and left. He needed to find somewhere to pray,

Someplace where sunlight poured over him, where evil couldn’t stay,

Evil would stay away from exposure and find all the secret places,

It had already captured three of them, he could see it on their faces,

Adam knew he could not control, the choice Samantha would make,

But within his heart he felt at peace, he knew the path he’d take,

Damon wasn’t seen around the church. He claimed to be really ill,

But rumors flew from house to house about how his nights were filled,

His name was bandied about, giving the church ill-fame,

He was asked to go away, where none would hear his name,

Mary had fled that very day to escape her life of abuse,

Disappearing somewhere far off, safe as a nameless recluse,

Samantha left Adam for glittering lights, success always on the brink,

She’d call from time to time, usually when she had too much to drink,

She said she might return some day, if he would take her back,

She just needed a few more months, until she was on a winning track,

Adam endured the jibes and sneers, ignoring the months of lies,

Gradually pity was exchanged for respect, he was deemed saintly and wise,

But he never remarried, more lessons he chose not to learn,

He had kept a journal each day of his life, and now he wanted it to burn,

He had finally forgiven Samantha for all she had said and done,

It had taken years for his inner battle to be won,

Now that it was over, he wanted his stories to feed the flames,

But I couldn’t destroy his work, I just changed the names,

I’ve come to realize that learning lessons does not end,

But there’s no reason to repeat them again and again,

If there’s a moment when a story rings clear and true,

I’ll take it to heart and growth for me will ensue,

Adam’s story won’t be wasted if others do, too.

The Choice


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 He stood silently and scratched his head,

Staring at the oaks outside hard and long,

While his terrible thoughts raced ahead,

“How did I manage to let things become so wrong?”

He should warn her, “Don’t be fooled if no words are said,”

He shuddered and wondered, “Why can’t I be strong?”

The thought of her crying filled him with dread,

Although three birds flew from tree to tree,

And two squirrels chased each other on limbs below,

Nothing else moved as far as he could see,

Life disappeared when the temperature dipped low,

“I think this winter scene is just like me,

I’m in a marriage that’s as cold as the snow,

There’s a little life left, but I need to be free,”

His wife made coffee and brought it with care,

He didn’t look up, afraid his face would betray,

But he was already certain that she was aware,

She hurried off to wake the kids for another school day,

“Why doesn’t she mention something about my affair?”

But she busied herself with the children and he was on his way,

Sweaty palms, racing heart, turmoil inside, softly he began to swear,

An office party, it had started out innocent enough,

They talked about their lives and when they could retire,

He tried to stay away, but his heart wasn’t that tough,

They had too much to drink, then alone and on fire,

He felt tenderness, passion, and all the romantic stuff,

“I’m happy,” he told himself, yet deep within he was a liar,

For he still had to go home, and his wife to bluff,

Time passed quickly after that sordid start,

His desires were fulfilled but it was a living hell,

He knew he had to choose between head and heart,

Should he do what he thought was right and well,

Or keep on savoring life sip by sip, loving each part?

 Would he have to decide? Only time would tell,

What choice should he make, if he wanted to be smart?

One evening his lover presented him with a choice,

 Leave two children and his wife, with two years of deceit,

She said, “If you want to keep me, you’ll need a divorce,”

Quickly he thought, “Love on the run, or a family complete,”

It was only then that he finally found his voice,

“I choose to love again with a love more concrete,

I hope she will love me, because I’ve made my choice.”

I Chose To Love You


I Chose To Love You

I chose to love you,

Not because you were perfect,

Or because I wanted to connect,

But because I first liked you,

For being the person you are,

I saw the way you treated others,

Like everyone was a sister or brother,

You were never haughty or mean,

You were the kindest person I’d seen,

You never gave up, never were daunted,

The way you asked for what you wanted,

Never demanding or criticizing,

Trying to manipulate or confronting,

Demands stop the flow of love, you stated,

While requests give love a chance to relate,

You turned out to be quite a gem,

You accepted me for who I am,

So I made a choice to love you,

When I was being abusive,

You weren’t reclusive,

You stood your ground,

And wouldn’t let me put you down,

You told me you loved me too much,

To be treated badly,

It wouldn’t be good for me or for you,

It would turn out sadly,

 You had too much self respect,

And too much respect for me,

To let our relationship just be,

You held me accountable,

And made me better than I was,

I chose to love you,

Your kisses waited for me,

You gave me space to be free,

Without being smothered,

You let me take your love,

Like a fish takes the bait and runs,

But once I tired of running,

You reeled me in,

Letting me think I was still free,

But I was too much in love,

And glad you chose me.

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