The Literary Corner: Renegade Writers Guild

Published 9:21 am Thursday, July 6, 2017

“Celebration Song”

By Linda Barnette

This past Memorial Day weekend was very special to me as my church, First Presbyterian Church of Mocksville, celebrated our 250th anniversary.  We are one of the oldest churches in North Carolina and actually began at Joppa when a group of early settlers met for worship in that area. According to old Presbyterian records, 1767 was the date when a minister first came to this area to preach.  The congregation decided to move to Mocksville before 1900 and has been here since that time.

I volunteered to be a part of the committee to choose the events of our special weekend. We met often during the year and tried to plan everything down to the last detail. My particular job was to write some new words about the history of our church and fit them to the tune of “The Church’s One Foundation.”  In the end the committee decided to use some words to the actual hymn as well as 2 of my verses as the praise and worship song for the month of May, culminating with using it as a part of our special service on May 28.  I must admit that it was quite an emotional experience to hear everyone singing my words!  I wanted to share them here for everyone to read if they wish:

“The Church’s one foundation is Jesus Christ her Lord.

She is His new creation by water and the word.

From heaven he came and brought her to be His holy bride.

With His own blood he bought her and for her life he died.

From Europe’s great oppression the bravest pilgrims fled.

To a land beyond the ocean where none had ever tread.

They build a house of worship just in a clearing small.

And they did call it Joppa for it was beautiful.

They moved their church to Mocksville where it has been for years.

Today the church is growing, its mission loud and clear.

To spread the news of God’s love to people far and near

The Church’s One Foundation shall be forever here.

The last verse is a repeat of verse 1.

It was a wonderful celebration and something that we will always remember with great affection, knowing that if God brought us this far He will never leave us.  He is with us always.

“Magic Moments”

By Julie Terry Cartner


Caught in a jelly jar,

Holes poked into the lid,

The original glow light,

Sitting beside the child’s bed.

Shining, like the sparkle in her eyes.

“I’ll let them go tomorrow.”

She promised.

But, in the morning

The fireflies are gone,

The jar empty

Except for the few blades of grass

That she left for her fanciful friends

In case they got hungry

During the night.

Was it magic?

Are fireflies actually fairies

Who only come out in the evenings

To dance their joyful jigs

And then disappear

When morning dawns

Only to appear, once again, at dusk?

Could they slip out through those child made holes,

And return to their forest glades,

Stretch out under a royal fern,

Lulled to sleep by the sonorous sounds,

The chorus of the cicada, the peepers, the owl, and more,

To rest and rejuvenate,

Ready to return the next evening,

And resume their twirling tango?

Who knows?

Does it matter?

Or like the child with sparkling eyes

Can we just enjoy

The thrill of catching fireflies

And the mystery of their disappearance?

The magic moments of childhood.

A Heart of Steel, an excerpt

“Facing the Future”

By Stephanie Dean

Steele dreaded going to bed. Without sleeping pills, she wasn’t able to rest well. While Steele had never experienced difficulty falling asleep, going to bed had turned into the most dreaded part of her day.  Her current situation was not conducive to peaceful slumber.

Sandy was up waiting for Steele when she arrived, and the girls stayed up late talking.  Steele dreaded having to face the upcoming day. She lay in bed with her eyes open, staring at the ceiling. Light streamed through the crack of the bathroom door and cast light on the ceiling. Steele followed the cracks in the old plaster ceiling. A tear ran down her cheek. If she hadn’t ruined her life, she must have come close to it.  There was nothing Steele could do now but face her poor decisions.

Steele would have to tell her parents she had left her husband and was getting a divorce. Her mother’s words still rang in her ears, “You could work out your marriage if you would try.”

Hell no she couldn’t. She was not going to entertain any ideas of going back. Steele’s bad marriage had affected her family too. Steele now resisted telling her parents about any abuse she suffered in her marriage. After one physical altercation with her husband, she had made the mistake of sharing the event with her parents.

“I’m going to kill him if he lays his hands on her one more time,” her father said aloud in an elevated tone of voice.

Her mother replied emphatically, “Now Bob, let’s not be dramatic.” Steele just stared at her mother but said nothing.

Steele recollected the number of times she had picked up the telephone receiver to try and call someone for help. Her husband had ripped the phone wires out of the wall which always took days before the phone company showed up at her house to repair the wiring.

   Unable to sleep, Steele’s mind wandered with fleeting thoughts of all the crazy things she had endured in her marriage.