As I sit down to write this piece, my Favorite Poet’s plane had already brought him back to Paris. It was wonderful to have he and his family home for summer vacation, but I once again have to relinquish him to his chosen life in the City of Lights. Seeing him so happy there makes the separation more bearable, though I already miss him.
We watched an old movie recently, “The Bucket List.” Though the story of Morgan Freeman and Jack Nicholson facing cancer and dying is hardly the stuff of suspense, the quality of the writing and acting is such that I have to place it on my “do not miss” recommendation list. Those who’ve seen this movie will appreciate the following poem even more, though it stands on its own merits.
After Edward Lear
You might be bit by a rattler hid in your boot
or choke while drinking green tea;
could be killed by the kick of a madwoman’s foot
or be drowned in the syllabub sea.
You could murder yourself in New York with a fork
or melt in a crater of lava;
You could die by too frequently popping the cork
of your favorite brand of Marsala.
You could be gored by a virulent bull
Or be bored by a brute of a bee.
Your skull could crack like a china doll’s
when you fall from a three-story tree.
You might be split in two halves by a horse
or you could go more peacefully, of course.