"We’ll steal your boots", we said,
over cold pizza, soda, and beer.
OK, mostly root beer.
We were nerds like that.
The boot stealing and looking for loose change
was supposed to happen in an age filled with floating cars,
not two years before hover boards should have been invented.
Every bad luck joke thrown back in our faces--
even the luckiest man on earth got to make a speech,
before nerves withered,
twisting muscles, stealing words,
like a cursed prince in a fairy tale.
It reminded me of my favorite one,
and a comic relief’s tears,
once it was remembered
sometimes fairy tales don’t end well.
And the best you can hope for,
if you cannot wield a righteous flame,
if you do not hold a magic staff,
if you rolled poorly,
at least in our memories you are restored
to full hero’s health,
even if your death was not the stuff of bard song.
We didn’t take your boots in the end.
Song Choice: One by Metallica.
Liner Note: This post is part of Imaginary Gardens For Real Toad's September 2015 post, where we were asked to select a poem of one of the young writers Kerry teaches as inspiration for our poem and help them to complete their target of 300 poems in 30 days. I was inspired by Farewell by Nishka Ramkhelawan, using the line "It was not a beautiful death" as my inspiration. Friends and long time readers may have guessed by now it was also inspired by the death of a good friend, just about two years ago from ALS, better known as Lou Gherig's disease.