By S M Chen, May 23, 2017     “The greatest pleasure in life is doing what people say you cannot do.” Anonymous

A mountain of a man, I’d say,

Like the mountain on which he stood.

For forty days, two times a day

He dared to fight us if we would.

***

A freak of nature, if such be.

He stood six cubits and a span.

As sturdy as an oak was he;

More like a tree, it seemed, than man.

***

I recalled the lion and bear

That I’d pursued and smote to death.

Of danger I was well aware

But took my lamb and took their breath.

***

Our king did not want me to fight.

He said, “Thou art a youth, and he

Is man of war and man of might.

I fear for us; I fear for thee.”

***

But then relented and said, “Go

And God be with you.”  He then gave

Me armor that was his, and so

I hoped that my life it might save.

***

I put his helmet on my head

And donned the coat of mail of Saul.

But they didn’t feel right, so instead

No armor would I wear at all.

***

I bent a knee; I flexed a hip.

I chose five stones from nearby brook.

I put them in my shepherd’s scrip,

In hand my staff and sling I took.

***

Did I feel fear?  I cannot say.

I don’t recall the way I felt.

I think it may have been this way:

With harder things I thought I’d dealt.

***

So toward the tree I quickly ran.

I was alone; but they were two.

Before Goliath was a man

Who bore a shield, as bearers do.

***

He seemed insulted by my youth.

He cursed behind the man of shield.

He said he’d feed me, this forsooth,

To birds of air and beasts of field.

***

Those words of his I couldn’t abide;

Within me something then awoke:

A righteous rage I could not hide.

I couldn’t contain myself; I spoke.

***

I don’t regret the words I said.

I told him then, I told him there

Whose carcass it would be that fed

The beasts of field and birds of air.

***

I went toward him and slid a stone

Into the pouch of trusty sling.

It was the hardest stone I’ve thrown;

I put my might behind the thing.

***

I said a prayer as I let fly

That God would guide the path stone took.

It landed just above his eye.

As he fell down, methinks earth shook.

***

The Philistines, their hero dead,

Put down their arms and ran away.

I knew that, even as they fled,

They’d live to fight another day.

David and Goliath.  Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio. 1599.  In public domain.

***

I think back on that special day,

A day that dims in memory.

Though I grow old, I yet can say:

The Lord is good; O taste and see.

____________________________

S M Chen lives and writes in California.

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