Sunday, April 28, 2013

A Tribute to Madame Bovary

you aspired to all not there
and found love you couldn't declare
lovers jilted you time and again
with no one there to dull your pain

you shielded Charles from all you knew
your true self revealed to only a few
your dreams hid under a veil of smiles
your mind meandered many fanciful miles

starved of sophistication you so admired
you sought what your heart truly desired
boredom encompassed your life external
fashions of Paris shimmered in your journal

but sadly Paris you never did see
alas your story is now history
forbidden love stole your life away
and now you'll not see another day

arsenic was the answer to your life pains
convinced you were you'd never love again
yield you couldn't to mundane contentment
your end was Charles' long death sentence

alas poor Charles he found your letters
leaving him estranged and torn in tatters
his awkwardness you grew to abhor
he hurt 'til his heart could ache no more

now Madame Bovary you'll never know
you were loved and tears for you flowed
but poor Charles just couldn't see
how both your lives were a tragedy

Madame Bovary and the bust of her creator, Gustave Flaubert

Saturday, April 27, 2013

Although it seemed impossible...

You wake up. Your gear is set out and organized from the night before. Butterflies flutter inside, and you tell yourself, "You've worked hard for this!"

Although it seemed impossible, you've arrived at the end of your six months of training and achieved your qualifying time. You lace up your shoes; microchip firmly in place, check; bib number, check; safety pins for bib number, check;water, check. Nervously, you check again as your partner impatiently grumbles something about obsessive compulsive disorder... You take it in your stride. It's just all part of the routine of another race day morning.

The 5am morning air is cool and brisk, but still. You feel a slight chill in your sparse clothing of microfiber shirt and shorts, but warm up quickly with a gentle jog towards the start. Music plays in the distance and bright lights break the night. Everyone looks the same, save for a few intimidating tall very lank people standing nearby... The butterflies return. But then someone smiles and nods knowingly. You smile back. The butterflies settle again and you no longer feel alone.

Your wave is called and you approach the start line with finger on the start of your *Garmin. You calm yourself and conscientiously resist the adrenaline rush and being dragged into a prematurely too fast a pace. All your practice,experience of previous races and how to listen to your body come into play. You've worked hard for this fine Boston spring day. Those early morning commitments where you rose before the winter sun have culminated into  achieving your position at the start of the Boston Marathon. It was not easy running an hour before the day began. But here you are, 10 minutes before the end.

Although it seemed impossible six months ago, you've made it -- almost that is-- until the day that an act of violence so violent that it stole your legs away, your moment of glory and your passion literally blown away forever.

Although it seemed impossible, it was a nightmare, come true. Although it seemed impossible, two young men were convinced by their faith that stealing dreams was their duty to put their world right. To say how wrong they were seems too trite...

My Favorite Tree - Writer's workshop...

we came upon the village green
our old chestnut no long'r seen
where is our tree we so adore
our childhood tree we see no more

her branches held us way up high
she kept us safe as we reached the sky
silently she'd watch us play away
until dusk fell at the end of day

sometimes on a hot summer day
we often tired and abandoned play
we'd lay beneath her shimmering leaves
mindless of how we'll one day grieve

she graced us with her autumn colours
her beautiful leaves were like no others
we gathered conkers and climbed w' grace
a vacant patch now marks her place

this fine lady the subject of sonnets
100 years she'd graced our hamlet
there she stood still as time flew by
her death made you want to cry

what happened to our favorite tree
the tree that we no longer see
like all good things they fade and die
but on she lives in our mind's eye