I'm a little hesitant to share this poem. I happen to really like it and if you don't, I probably don't want you to tell me. :)
I first wrote this many years ago when our children were still young.Then, a few years ago, I worked on is some more and hence, the 2007 copyright date.
It is a true experience and has been a life-long reminder to me, although I have a long ways to go! It's also quite remarkable that it even happened as I married an awesome man who DOES DISHES and he does so much more often than I. However, on this particular night, I was up late doing the dishes.
I do ask that you not copy or use this poem, especially without my express permission. And I hope you like it...
The house is quiet.
My husband and children are asleep.
The silence of the room is interrupted
Only by the sounds I make while washing the dishes.
As I pick up each dish and rinse away our dinner,
I am reminded of the meal we enjoyed together.
The chatter of the children as they spoke of their day
Lingers in my mind and I feel a sweet contentment.
I’m nearly done when I notice my well-used cookie sheet,
Standing at the back of the dish drainer;
Even though I have washed it thoroughly,
It really doesn’t look very clean.
The evidence of so many batches of cookies baked
Over and over again until it looks tarnished and brown.
When it was new, it sparkled and shined.
Now it is discolored and scratched.
And for some reason, tonight, this bothers me.
I take the cookie sheet from its resting place and
Plunge it back into the warm, soapy water.
But I am unable to rid it of the baked-on grime.
I reach in the cupboard for an S.O.S. scouring pad
And go after the suspect brown specks with renewed vigor.
I pay special attention to the inside corners of the cookie sheet.
This proves to be especially satisfying and I continue until it shines.
It has been reborn and I can see my reflection in it.
And suddenly, I realize… I am like the cookie sheet.
I’m not dirty by any means, but perhaps,
Not quite clean enough either; I have lost some of my sparkle.
Leaning against the sink I know what I must do.
I will take upon me the S.O.S. scouring pad of repentance
And work and pray hard to be shiny and clean,
Until the Savior’s image shows in my countenance.
I plan to keep my cookie sheet as bright as it looks today
And with a few repairs here and there, and a heart full of love,
I can do the same for myself, that I might be more useful
To those I share this earthly space with.
Who knew? Sometimes, there’s not much difference between
A neglected ol’ cookie sheet and a life too busy to notice
Some of the sparkle and shine has faded.
Yes, S.O.S. pads are a beautiful thing.
~ © Stephanie Abney 2007