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The Gun Fight!

by louis gander

The sun was rising in the east
behind some hitching posts.
And weathered boards, on buildings old,
had nothing left to boast.

But I wore fancy cowboy duds,
I was a handsome sight.
A crowd of people gathered 'round
to watch this old gun fight.

The street was dead and empty
except for sin and I -
and how I ended up out here,
I'm really not sure why.

A bullet? Very dangerous,
if we've no self-control -
and sin is much more dangerous,
because it kills the soul.

Noon met with humidity.
The sun was dry and hot.
Beads of sweat rolled down my face -
my stomach, in a knot.

But no, I wasn't nervous -
though duel had begun.
I counted out ten paces -
then turned and drew my gun.

But sin is faster, furious -
much quicker than the eye.
Oh please! Dear Lord and Saviour -
I do not want to die!

And then... in just an instant,
I dropped down to my knees -
then fell as peace passed over me.
I felt the gentle breeze.

But something stood in front of me.
Its shadow crossed my face.
I then saw Jesus on that cross.
He took my very place.

Ashamed, I dropped my pistol.
My pride was killed that day -
as I pulled off my fancy boots
and flung my hat away.

Humbled on the dusty street
with crowded eyes on me -
my every pride had vanished.
I learned humility.

In faithfulness, I stood again,
though I was at a loss...
How could Jesus love me so
on that old rugged cross?

The sun was setting in the west
behind some hitching posts.
And weathered boards, on buildings old,
had nothing left to boast.

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This poem won 2nd place for the February 2012 poetry contest

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