This challenge comes form poet James A. Tweedie:

Perhaps the most familiar of all formal, English-language poems is the classic 18th century bedtime prayer that reads:

Now I lay me down to sleep
I pray the Lord, my soul to keep.
But if I die before I wake
I pray the Lord, my soul to take.

Over the years, sensitive parents have rewritten it many ways including like this:

Now I lay me down to sleep,
I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
Angels watch me through the night,
And wake me with the morning light.

The poem has often been parodied and although I believe the original version was perfectly suitable in its day, I’m confident that there are some of you who will be inspired by my challenge to improve on it!

Post your version in the comments section below. No winners, losers, gold medals or participant’s trophies—just fun. Here are three to help kick-start your Muse:

Now I lay me down to rest;
I cheated on my Civics test
But since I got away with it
And passed, I feel okay with it.

Now I lay me down to sleep
I know that what I sow, I’ll reap.
But does that count if no one heard
Me call Irene a “stinky turd?”

As I kneel and bow my head
I pray that I won’t wet the bed
The way I did two nights ago—
And please don’t let my sister know.

Ready, Set, Go!




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107 Responses

  1. Susan Jarvis Bryant

    From now I choose to shut my eyes;
    There is no joy in being wise.
    I’m waiting for the dizzy kiss
    Of ignorance – I’ve heard it’s bliss.

    • Sally Cook

      It seems no matter how I try
      Imperfect, I will never rise
      Completed, to the Heavenly Skies,
      Or sit down with the Heavenly Host
      To Earl Grey, three jams and toast.
      Please do not look askance at me —
      I cannot be the worst you’ll see
      Nor yet the best I hope to be
      Should I live past one century.

  2. Mike Bryant

    I asked God for a bike to keep.
    I think that He was fast asleep.
    Instead I found one, which I stole,
    So now I pray, “God, save my soul.”

    • Sally Cook

      Susan and Mike, both have managed to address the two great issues of the day — the bliss of ignorance and the comfort of hypocrisy, and make them both very funny. That is one big reason why radicals can never win — they recognize neither humor nor individuality.
      PS – please tell Susan my e-mails are
      unreadable as they are covered by the
      contents of my Contacts folder which seems determined to stick around. The poor things come, then just sit there like patients In the Drs. office, waiting to be opened up…
      Never mind — I almost expect things to go wrong under present conditions. I have an e-mail to James Sale which must be sent Am going to the neighbors for that.

    • Roy E. Peterson

      You really found the inner young boy in you for this one! Love it!

  3. C.B. Anderson

    This, James, is not a version of “Now I lay me,” but this one, written quite some time ago, is in a similar vein:

    An Adult’s Prayer

    Before I fall asleep,
    Lest death break in and take
    Me like a stealthy thief,
    I pray the Lord will keep
    Me safe, if only for
    My wife and children’s sake,
    Another year or more;
    And when I come awake,
    I do so with relief
    That faith’s a simple leap.

  4. Joe Tessitore

    Now I lay me down to sleep,
    I pray the Lord my soul to keep;
    If I am Woke when I awake
    Then through my heart
    Please drive a stake.

    • Sally Cook

      Joe, I love it! With every one of your apt jabs at the forces of insanity and pomposity, your humor becomes more polished.
      You are a rising force in the halls of humor.

    • Mike Bryant

      This one’s for you, Joe.

      Since I am woke I must not sleep
      For social justice I will keep,
      And if I die for wokedom’s sake
      With Lucifer my soul shall bake.

  5. D.G. Rowe

    I ask the Fairy for a pound
    Beneath my pillow safe and sound.
    My tooth I kiss it with a prayer,
    I’m saving up, the deal is fair.

  6. Cynthia Erlandson

    Now I try to get to sleep.
    What else can I count, but sheep?
    Sheep are loud and dumb and smelly.
    This ancient ritual seems silly.

    • Mia

      Thank you
      Really enjoyed reading your poem
      it is very inspiring.

      Instead before I fall asleep, I pray,
      And thank the Lord for docile sheep.
      I thank Him for their fragrant cheese,
      As well as their smelly, woolly fleece,
      As throughout cold winters of the north,
      They freely give, so we can be fed and warm,
      And dress in cosy clothes of homespun wool.

  7. James A. Tweedie

    So far so good– nay, even more than good with every prayer submitted thus far seeded with an inkling of brilliance! Proving that wit and pathos . . . not to mention bathos . . . can occupy the same space. The Muse is stirring. Keep it up and feel free to submit more than one inspired (or uninspired) gem. Succumb to the urge. Do not resist temptation. The Sirens are calling!

  8. D.G. Rowe

    I say this prayer with tongue in cheek,
    I’m skin-full drunk, I bloody reek.
    To sod with being mild and meek,
    The Vicar sez I’ll go to ‘ell!
    So bless this belch, I’ll go pell-mell!

  9. Joe Tessitore

    Lord, I find it hard to sleep.
    My President is such a creep!
    He sided with the Taliban
    And left me in Afghanistan.

    • Patricia Redfern

      Joe! How fabulous this is! Wisdom in four sentences. You made my day rollick with boundless laughter. The more I read it, the more I love it!

  10. Paul Freeman

    If I fall asleep and Fate
    decides I should reincarnate,
    forget this Earth, look to the stars,
    I’d rather be reborn on Mars.

    • Sandi Christie

      Mars is kind of rough this time of year, but I have heard there are some interesting dimensions out past the Pleiades. Certainly, there must be better places than this to come back to.

  11. Joseph S. Salemi

    Now I lay me down to sleep —
    Thank God the chamber-pot is deep,
    For I’ve been drinking beer all night
    (The heavy stuff, not Amstel Lite)
    So my kidneys and my bladder
    Will be at work like Jacob’s Ladder,
    Distilling urine back and forth,
    Upwards, downwards, south and north.
    In order to maintain my bliss
    I’ll need to take a major piss.

  12. Jeff Eardley

    Every night I go to bed,
    I dwell on things I might have said,
    My many failures, and disasters,
    I think it’s time to change the matress.

  13. Judy Davies

    Now I lay me down to sleep
    A bag of goodies at my feet
    So I can snack throughout the night
    And hide the bag before morning’s light.

  14. Mia

    Just a thought that might be of interest

    The Greek word for poet is
    Interestingly this word is used in The Nicene creed
    as the word that refers to the creator
    so the line translated as creator or maker of heaven and earth
    actually reads as poet of heaven and earth!
    Doesn’t feel quite the same in English though but lots of things are
    lost in translation. Even so you might find it interesting.

    • Joseph S. Salemi

      The old Scottish word for poet is “makar,” (maker), which directly corresponds the Greek “poeites.” And of course the English “poet” is a direct borrowing from the Greek term. The Greek verb “poiein” means to make, to create, to put together, to construct.

      There’s an important lesson here. A poet makes his poems, just as a mason makes walls, or a carpenter makes tables. He puts them together with his native skill and his learned craft. Don’t fall for the Platonic malarkey that it comes from “divine inspiration” or “creativity.”

      • Mia

        I have not actually studied Plato. Every time I tried I found the interest did not last very long!
        What you write resonates as it reminds me of arguing that children should be taught a variety of skills rather than being left alone to be creative. Although of course I would not discount the importance of creativity but believe it exists in relation to knowledge and skill. I hope that makes sense. Also whether one believes in a God or not, one has to admit that creation/the universe, is crafted extremely well. Hence, I suppose the thinking is that God is a poet who is a skilful maker or master craftsman.
        Are we saying the same thing only in different ways? Mine not as well crafted!

      • James A. Tweedie

        Dr. S.,

        I must say that I agree with all you have said except for the provocative declaration contained in the final sentence which I do not debate but simply consider in the following thoughts.

        The Platonic citation you refer to in, I assume, from Phaedrus 145a where, in his discussion of madness he says,

        “And a third kind of possession and madness comes from the Muses. This takes hold upon a gentle and pure soul, arouses it and inspires it to songs and other poetry, and thus by adorning countless deeds of the ancients educates later generations. But he who without the divine madness comes to the doors of the Muses, confident that he will be a good poet by art, meets with no success, and the poetry of the sane man vanishes into nothingness before that of the inspired madmen.”

        I assume that this is what you reject as “malarkey.” Fair enough. Aristotle, in his Poetics, doesn’t consider external, divine, spiritual input or inspiration at all in his analysis of the arts.

        But the Romans embraced the concept of the Genius who follows and works within our natural abilities in a manner that is, to my understanding, not far removed from the idea of inspiration.

        In the New Testament and in the faith that it represents there is the idea of charisms or gifts that are divinely distributed to people in various ways and in varying degrees, Although the New Testament does not equate these gifts with the skill and talent found in the arts, it is not a great leap to assume that natural predisposition of any of the arts (poetry, music, sculpture, etc) can be understood as having been gifted from God and in-breathed (or “inspired”) by the Holy Spirit.

        At least this how it was understood through the Middle Ages when the word “inspired” was understood to mean “immediate influence of God” or “to fill (the mind, heart, etc., with grace, etc.)” “to prompt or induce (someone to do something),” to “influence or animate with an idea or purpose.” The source of inspiration could be from God, from scripture,or from the creativity or character of another person

        Clearly the concept fell out of favor during the Renaissance where Tintoretto seems to be in full agreement with Dr. Salemi when he says, “Beautiful colors can be bought in the shops on the Rialto, but good drawing can only be bought from the casket of the artist’s talent with patient study and nights without sleep.”

        Bach, although he offered his music to the glory of God did not, to my knowledge, ever suggest that he believed his music to be inspired into him by through some direct conduit with the divine. Like Mozart, Bach trained, practiced, honed and developed skills that brought out his innate musical ability to the full. The pressure and demands of his profession did not allow him the luxury to sit about like a Lake District poet waiting for some grand idea to be handed to him on a platter.

        The idea of “inspiration” did not find much support from the secularist/humanist views of the Enlightenment, either and the so-called “Romantic” period that re-embraced the idea of external inspiration, arose, in part, as a reactionary response to the general dismissal of all things spiritual by the intellectually progressive culture of that era.

        Having said all this, I must confess that I am, nonetheless, inclined to believe that there is, in fact, some manner of truth in the idea of “inspiration.” Although I experience this occasionally in my poetry, I experience it more often in my prose and musical creations where what emerges seems to be greater than the sum of its parts, so to speak. “Where did that come from?” I ask myself upon playing back a fugue that I have composed, or in re-reading a short story or a novel that I have written.

        I somewhat coyly refer to having a Muse or to give God credit for drawing things of beauty from inside me that I did not know were there before they emerged into the light of day.

        I use the word “inspired” not in a definitive sense but in a descriptive sense in an attempt to explain what happens when the creative product appears to exceed the level of skill, craft, and talent that produced it.

        This might be rightfully considered to be muddled thinking but I think that “malarkey” seems overly dismissive of something that I have found to be an essential and inherent intangibility in the creative process.

        I may be a bit old fashioned in believing that Plato might have been on to something that Aristotle missed. But even if Plato’s view on the matter (and Homer’s, too, by the way) were to be proven wrong or to be simply dismissed, there remains the Christian concept of divine gifts along with the biblical assertion that being creators is one way in which we are “in the image and likeness” of God.

        Thank you, Dr. S., for tweaking my interest in pursuing the subject and giving me an excuse for thinking it through.

      • Joseph S. Salemi

        Dear Mr. Tweedie —

        Yes, I had that Platonic passage in mind, but I thought it hardly worth alluding to because there isn’t a thing said in any Platonic dialogue that isn’t qualified or finessed or revised or contradicted in some other Platonic dialogue. Just look, for instance, at Plato’s utter flip-flops on whether rhetoric is good or bad, or at his impenetrable comments on “love.”

        In any case, I think the source of the problem is in the words “inspiration” and “divine madness.” To me they are simply useful metaphors, not terms of description. You could just as well call poetic activity the result of “disease” or “destiny” — it’s just the same Romantic obfuscation, along with the natural human tendency of poets to seek self-exaltation.

        Your comments on the possible Christian inspiration for some works brings to mind a point that I like to bring up when teaching Renaissance drama. The very best English play about sin, salvation, penitence, redemption, and the finality of heaven and hell is “Doctor Faustus.” And yet it is fairly certain that its author, Christopher Marlowe, was an atheist and materialist who didn’t even believe in the immortality of the human soul. So what’s going on here? Did the Holy Ghost inspire Marlowe to write the play in spite of himself? Did Marlowe write it just to make money, since his audience was overwhelmingly Christian? Or is it a more likely explanation that Marlowe was simply an excellent poet, and could turn his hand to any theme he chose, producing a moving story about sin and damnation?

        All good artists create things that can surprise them at times, and it is tempting to believe that these works have come to them from sources outside themselves. Some believers call that external source God. Psychologists like Jung call it the collective Unconscious. There is no way one can prove that any of these assertions are true. Perhaps it is best to keep in mind the words of W.B. Yeats, who in one of his poems says

        “Whatever man hath wrote or said,
        Man’s own resinous heart hath fed.”

        I’m probably not quoting the words exactly. But they seem to me to be a better explanation than inspiration or divine madness.

      • Joe Tessitore

        We wouldn’t be here if the Divine hadn’t breathed into us, let alone be writing poems.
        The author of “The Burning Babe” would strongly disagree with you.

      • Sandi Christie

        This obviously comes from the intellectual mind that has not experienced “Divine inspiration”. The Sagans and Hawkings of the world would probably agree with you, but I doubt Einstein would, or Donne, Blake or even Shakespeare. The intellectual mind often looks through a glaucomatous field of vision. The Voice of Spirit is within you and can be heard by those that cultivate the Divine. Blake spoke of “Poetic Genius” often when referring to inspiration by the Holy Spirit, although he also seemed to use the words as the Hindu’s use the word Brahman as a more all-encompassing term to include God and that created by God as well as Spirit. My own opinion only, I don’t expect you to agree, just adding a different point of view.

        I had one incredible experience while writing a poem that stands out in my mind as it seemed to come from somewhere else. Lines were hanging there in my mind, and my first impression was to reject them as I did not think that they were what I was looking for, and there was a quiet voice in the back of my mind that said: “write it down”, and I did, and then another line came and another and another, and I looked back on what I wrote in awe. When I finished it, and read it back, tears were streaming down my face and I felt completely connected to God. I know of others who have had such experiences too, and until you have had such an experience, how could you believe in such things? You can’t. But I do wish you such an experience as it would certainly change your mind.

    • Joseph S. Salemi

      This is the second or third time you’ve brought up that Robert Southwell poem. I’m not sure what you’re driving at.

      That poem was the first serious piece of English literature that I recited as a high school sophomore before an audience. It’s an account of the speaker’s vision, on a wintry Christmas Day, of the Christ child burning in flames. Those flames are the objective correlative of His coming Passion, and how it will bring about the salvation of souls. It’s composed in fourteener rhyming couplets

      So what bearing does it have on what Tweedie and I were discussing? Or do you just enjoy repeating the poem’s title?

  15. Sally Cook

    Now I lay me down. You see,
    This world will be the death of me.
    The many things that I desire
    May send me to eternal fire.
    It’s not so bad as that, but still
    It’s hard to bend my iron will.

    • Roy E. Peterson

      Fascinating thoughts on display, especially the iron will many of us harbor.

  16. Isabelle Wann

    Now I lay me down to bed
    Lord, take my conscience from my head,
    How could I truthfully take a test that’s closed book
    If it’s all from home, where teachers can’t look?

  17. Toshiji Kawagoe

    Now I lay me down to sleep,
    I pray the Muses to keep
    a brilliant poem I’ll make
    from limbo until daybreak.

    • Toshiji Kawagoe

      Sorry, this is an updated version:

      Now I lay me down to sleep,
      I pray the Muses to keep
      a song in the dream I’ll make
      from limbo until daybreak.

  18. Joe Tessitore

    The Thirteen

    Now we lay them down to sleep
    And pray you, Lord, their souls to keep.
    In You, indeed, they placed their trust
    And so they died in service just.

  19. James A. Tweedie

    Thank you, Dr. S for your thoughtful response. Your words reminded me of a poem I wrote the year I graduated from high school–words that, in retrospect seem to reflect a view of poetry not much different than yours.

    A game I play with sharpened pen
    To rhyme each word at phrases end.
    But nothing written as I play
    Is ever what I want to say.

    To be confined to form and line
    Is nothing but a waste of time.
    For who can say in metered word
    Those thoughts which but his soul has heard.

    A life begins, a baby cries,
    The poets praise it to the skies.
    But theirs is but an empty sound
    Of joy that must be felt, not found.

    For who has ever caught in verse
    The awesome sadness of the hearse?
    Such things are far beyond man’s reach.
    For he may only try to teach
    And speak of things his soul has heard
    Which can’t be read as noun or verb.

    The poets job is dare to do
    With words what words weren’t meant to do.
    It’s nothing more, it’s nothing less,
    A tricky line or hopeless mess.
    If poetry must have a name,
    It must be simply called a game.

    I seem to recall that even as I wrote those words I didn’t fully embrace them but wrote them more for effect than from out of conviction (indeed, not unlike Marlowe and Faust or Jefferson and the Declaration of Independence). For I had a budding sense that something akin to inspiration played a part in producing the art and literature that history has judged to be great, and even as an eighteen-year-old I wanted to be able to both fan and to release whatever spark of greatness I had in me.

    Not every artist needs to draw from a Muse or a belief in God in order for their greatness to find expression. But even assuming this is true one cannot conclude that such inspiration is not, need not, nor cannot be present for others.

    • Susan Jarvis Bryant

      While musing in my moonlit bed
      Words swirl and whisper in my head.
      He breathed their beauty into me;
      Their destiny is poetry.

      I know because He told me so.
      As dawn begins to bud then glow,
      Linguistic gifts will meld and mesh
      And rise before my eyes – made flesh.

    • Joseph S. Salemi

      “Genius is two percent inspiration, and ninety-eight percent perspiration.”

      –Thomas Alva Edison

      • Roy E. Peterson

        Just think what Edison could have done with a greater percentage of inspiration!

      • Susan Jarvis Bryant

        Joe S, I’m no expert at maths, but I agree with the sentiment of this Edison quote… after all, he has seen the light. 😉

    • Roy E. Peterson

      I am a strong believer in inspiration flowing from both an external source and an internal one. I have a Muse I think about for some of my poems, reach down mentally into my heart and soul for others, and a divinely inspired spark that I call God or the Holy Spirit for the rest. They especially are electric after midnight for some reason. I love your “inspired” poem from whatever source.

  20. Mia

    As I lay me down in bed
    I find temptation such a pest,
    So I pray dear God, Let me fight the urge
    To get back up and surf the ‘net.
    Please, I pray, do not allow,
    Google, YouTube or SCP
    To drag me from my cosy bed
    Despite my dismal tiredness.
    But as I cannot sleep a wink,
    I’ll just dash down for a drink
    And come back upstairs in just a tick-

    -Oh no, please forgive
    Did I send that, I am distraught,
    I am only half awake,
    For goodness sake I am in shock
    It is nearly four o’clock!
    Time for bed but first a thought
    I do not want to make light of God
    So as I lay me down to snore
    I thank Him for His wondrous works.

    For through this task
    I now understand the point of virtual dialogue
    I see how it can take place in space through
    an understandable Scientific base
    (Well, understandable to some)
    So You oh God are trying to say
    If you can do that, why can’t I?

    • Mia

      for clarification
      the word you in the penultimate line should be
      with a capital letter! Greater accuracy will be
      my new year’s resolution. Those rules do have
      their uses! But in fact the whole poem needs
      revision. Well if at first you don’t succeed…

  21. David Watt

    All At Sea

    I have a hammock, not a bed,
    In which to lay my sea-sick head.
    No more the ocean waves for me.
    ‘Land ho! Land ho!’ Please let it be!

  22. David Watt

    Woke In Fright

    Now I lay me down to sleep
    I pray my common sense to keep.
    Because I dread to be a bloke
    Who wakes to find he’s turning woke.

  23. jd

    Now I lay me down to sleep,
    I pray the Lord will let me eat.
    All doors are closing, one by one,
    To those of us who will not run.

  24. James A. Tweedie

    Thank you, David Watt, for giving me the idea:

    My name is Elmo, furry red,
    I’d like to lay me down in bed
    But on this cruise, the briny deep
    Has made it hard to go to sleep.

    The ship I’m on is buffeted
    And filled with puppets Muppeted
    Being tossed about both fro and to,
    Like Cookie Monster, feeling blue.

    My Fozzie-friend whose fur is brown
    Is sore afraid we’re going to drown.
    So scared and terrified, poor fellow,
    He has, like our pal, Bert, turned yellow.

    Lord, as you did on Galilee
    The night you walked upon the sea,
    Please calm the storm, make it serene
    Before, like Kermit, I turn green.

  25. Roy E. Peterson

    Now I lay me down, but why?
    Mother saw I ate the pie.
    It’s just as well that I am here.
    I might have drunk up father’s beer.

    My aching stomach needs a rest
    I guess that lying here is best.
    If I awaken in the dawn,
    Lord, let this tummy ache be gone.

  26. Roy E. Peterson

    Now I lay me down to sleep.
    Lord, I am tired of counting sheep.
    Bring some pretty girls my way,
    Then I will dream of making hay.

    Forgive my sins in puberty
    For I love every girl I see.
    When I awake and cold’s the ember,
    Lord, let me pretty girls remember.

  27. Roy E. Peterson

    Fascinating thoughts on display, especially the iron will many of us harbor.

  28. Roy E. Peterson

    Now I lay me down to rest.
    I made an F on the French test.
    I got a spanking. I’m okay.
    Please stop the hurting, s’il vous plaît!

  29. Robert James Liguori

    Now I stretch me down to rest,
    I inform the devil my soul to dress.
    Demons torment me through and through,
    And vanish swiftly with the morning dew.

  30. Renee Claire

    Now I lay me down to sleep.
    I close my eyes and start to weep.
    Another day has just gone past,
    The suffering of the world amassed.

    My eyelids do not block the sight
    Of wretched people in their plight:
    The poor and afflicted, in despair,
    And victims of a war declared.

    I pray the wrath of God will mend
    And suffering very soon will end.
    I know that He can hear my plea
    And I must have all trust in Thee.

  31. G.D. Rowe

    This prayer I’m forced to do and say
    On bloody knees at end of day.
    The Vicar says I’m vile and sin-full,
    But when he’s gone I’ll have my hand-full.

  32. D.G. Rowe

    I pray to nuffin in partic’lar,
    And do me best in my vernac’lar;
    But bloody ‘ell the bird next door,
    I want ‘er, desp’rate, more and more.

  33. D.G. Rowe

    I pray to the Gods of Rock ‘n’ Roll,
    Like Meat Loaf sez I shud ‘n’ all.
    I practice bleedin’ ‘ard all day
    To play the strings like Stevie Ray.

  34. Sarah Hills

    (for a baby)

    When I lay you down to sleep
    I pray for you and kiss your cheek
    My prayer, that angels hold you tight
    Watch over you ’til morning light

  35. RickJ

    Now I lay sleep not to be
    So anxious I pray sincerely
    Desperate am I for rest-peace
    From this insomnia please release

    • RickJ


      Now I lay but not to sleep
      Though I pray for dreams so deep
      Desperate I am for rest and peace
      From this insomnia I need release

  36. Carol C.

    Now he lays in permanent sleep
    since Moderna juice through his veins did seep.
    His death a fact, both sad and true.
    Horton shouldn’t have listened to the WHO.

  37. Norma Okun

    As a child I wept myself to sleep
    I prayed the Lord would bring my parents home
    The prayers bought them back in dreams
    And happy memories filled my heart with joy

    • James A. Tweedie

      Well done, everybody. I’ll not mention favorites but I will confess that I’ve decided to take a step back from my opening promise and give each of you (and any who may subsequently add a verse or two ) a virtual participants trophy after all. Congrats!

  38. jd

    Oh, Afghanistan!
    How evil, can be man.
    I pray the blessed Lord will keep
    His loving eye upon His sheep.

  39. Sandi Christie

    Now I lay me down to sleep
    In God, His certainty I keep,
    And if my body seems to pass
    Then lay it down beneath the grass.

    I need not fear, His Voice I hear—
    The Voice of Love that I hold dear.
    For in His Spirit, we are One,
    Our Unity can’t be undone.

  40. Lucia Haase

    Through my window, bright star light
    shines His presence here this night.
    There from in your Kingdom’s Keep,
    comfort me Lord while I sleep.

  41. Kathy Bahr

    “Oh” it’s a bedtime prayer now go wash your feet
    And one wink for me
    While the ocean rocks us to sleep
    The bedtime prayer waits for me

  42. Stephen Kingsnorth


    Now I lay me down to sleep,
    diazepam, mixed malt to keep,
    hand dyskinesia, palm clasp,
    kneeling, though rising final rasp.

    Her snoring sets my teeth on edge,
    side shelving, teeter on the ledge,
    but false that whisky tumbler shared,
    or works gummed up if molars paired.

    The pillow talk suggests a mare,
    dream bucking bronco, some affair;
    we need protection from the manes,
    the wights of eyes, shades counterpanes.

    If I awake, not at a wake,
    hot cup of tea for old time’s sake,
    she woke to make up, plan my day,
    but left me, slumber, nought to say.

    So thank the Lord, as ruby dawns
    that wisdom of our forty yawns
    will keep as dozing, final years
    though laughter yet draws streams of tears.

  43. Patricia Redfern

    Now, I lay me down to sleep.
    Dear Lord, allow me, my head to keep.
    Insane Taliban coming to our shores?
    Heavy padlocks set on all my doors.

    If one killer, in my house comes.
    Beneath my pillow, I do have guns.
    Will use them, too, without reservation.
    I intend to stay alive in this American nation.

    P. Redfern. 9/3/2021

  44. Mia

    As I lay me down to sleep,
    With a heavy heart I think
    How much I have left undone;
    I am culpable I know
    And Your loving heart must break
    At the sight of earth today.

    I pray Dear God that You forgive,
    All transgressions great and small,
    All delusions and illusions, and
    Purify the heart to change
    And fill it with Your loving grace.

    Bless brave souls far and wide
    Who stand for liberty and right
    Keep them safe and in Your palm
    And cover them with Your wings of love.

    As we think of those now gone
    And wonder why and are appalled
    We believe they are now with You
    Their job done, leaving us to
    Play our part.

    Please Dear God, I pray,
    Help us to be unafraid
    Death is not the end of all
    You are the One to follow
    Not the trendy or the shallow.

    • Mia

      Just a change to the last stanza of this prayer.
      much happier about it now.


      As I lay me down to sleep,
      With a heavy heart I think
      How much I have left undone;
      I am culpable I know
      And Your loving heart must break
      At the sight of earth today.

      I pray Dear God that You forgive,
      All transgressions great and small,
      All delusions and illusions, and
      Purify the heart to change
      And fill it with Your loving grace.

      Bless brave souls far and wide
      Who stand for liberty and right,
      Keep them safe and in Your palm
      And cover them with Your wings of love.

      As we think of those now gone
      And wonder why and are appalled,
      We believe they are now with You
      Their job done, leaving us to
      Play our part.

      Please Dear God, I pray,
      Help us to be unafraid
      That in the joy of being
      With You we will know
      Death is not the end of all.

  45. Theresa Dould Cummings

    Four corners are there to my bed.
    I have four angels overhead
    Matthew, Mark, Luke and John.
    God bless the bed I sleep upon.
    For my Daughters

  46. Tamara Beryl Latham

    If tonight brings my last breath,
    where I am swept from life to death.
    Guard my soul as it takes flight
    and lead it to eternal light.

  47. BR

    Now I lay me down to sleep
    I pray that I don’t make folks weep
    At my shot at classical verse
    Than mine can there be any worse?

  48. Tom Sheppard

    Now I lay me…NOT SO FAST!
    Who took out the garbage last?
    Do your chore then come to bed
    Or IF you wake, you won’t be fed

  49. Wallace Vickers Kaufman


    Last night as I lay down to sleep
    I read aloud the poets’ words
    the evening’s prayers my soul to keep
    and anyone else’s who might have heard
    but here on the high river bluff
    even with doors and windows open
    there’s no one close enough.
    Long lost, the God who might stop in
    if I should die before I wake
    and off my soiled soul to take.
    And so prepared to sail for life or death
    I put the poets in their place,
    lay back and listened from my berth.
    Bullfrogs creaked and croaked from pools.
    I heard crickets from the grass,
    wind talking through the firs and dry madrone,
    a moth between the screen and glass,
    other sounds familiar, some unknown.
    I turned out the lamp to see instead of being seen.
    Below, the water played on rocks a tune,
    River running summer slow and lean,
    Ribbon of silver silk restored my sight.
    By putting out the light
    I had turned on the moon.

  50. Wallace Vickers Kaufman

    So often I laid down to sleep
    And wondered if I had a soul to keep
    And if I died before I waked
    Was there that God for whom I ached.
    I finally challenged Him one day,
    Take me tomorrow night at 3
    They’ll all be sleeping, just not me.
    Respondez s’il vous plait.

  51. Morrison Handley-Schachler

    Lord, I must finish come what may
    These tasks I have put off all day.
    My pile of chores is shoulder-deep.
    Stay up with me – don’t let me sleep.


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