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Five Smooth Stones

RebeccaStewartMar 6, 2021, 5:35:51 PM
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Five smooth stones

shaped, worn, polished

tumbled to perfection

calmly, quietly awaiting

their mission

You might think to hear some talk

that all the wars are won

the battles are all over

there’s no fighting to be done

The youth with but a moment’s

reflection stoops warily and

gathers with a knowing glance

the ones that will do the job

We do not face Goliath

nor hear his taunting shout

no risk, no threat, no danger

to concern ourselves about

Agile and supple he springs

across the stream, careful

of his footing yet intensely

focused on his mission

How easily we fool ourselves

as if greatness comes to fore

only in the fiery forge

the crucible of war

Alert to the danger, but

inured to the taunts,

single-mindedly stalking his prey

his eyes steady, unwavering

It isn’t swords or sabers

the skills of well-trained men

wise tactics or maneuvers

that see a struggle’s end

Alone, but confident, secure

knowing the power, skill,

strength beyond his own to

see the missile meet its mark

It takes but five smooth stones

a sense of right and wrong

the will to stand and speak

to rise above the throng

Nimble fingers grasp the 

smooth round stone, sinewy

arms swirl with dizzy speed

the aim is straight

When the weak are battered

bruised, bearing ridicule’n scorn

who’s standing in the gap,

giving strength to the forlorn

Five smooth stones were

ready, hewed, honed fit

for the task, but only one

was needed — this time

Whether cowardice or courage

cruelty or compassion

it’s a day to day decision

the character we fashion

In the stream of life, the

churning, spinning, grinding

of stone against stone prepares 

us for our day as heroes.

Rebecca Stewart

This reflection on the challenges of modern life, seems all the more apt today, when even the most basic of biblical ideals — the sanctity of life, the freedom to speak the truth in love, and the right to choose our own individual path — are being undermined daily.