Tuesday, March 15, 2011

The Boxer

"The Pugilist at Rest," by Apollonius. Roman copy of a Greek original.
Tinges of blood-red still visible on the bronze.

Sometimes I feel like a motherless child.
Today I feel like Apollonius' boxer looks.

I have a rest between rounds.
Time to staunch the bleeding some.
Take a breath.
Get that endswell on my eye so I can see.
Suck it up and go back for more.
Why am I doing this, again?

As is so often the case in the squared circle, too,
I have no way to tell how the fight is going.
I get mixed reviews from different sides of my brain.
I just know it hurts.
And I know, no matter what, I'm not going to quit.

In the immortal words of Cool Hand Luke, "You're gonna have to kill me..."

And at that thought, I'm reminded that, right now, an old friend is in a fight, too.
A different kind of fight.
A fight for his life.

And I say to myself, "C'mon, ya sissy, what are you complaining about?!"


In the clearing stands a boxer,
And a fighter by his trade
And he carries the reminders
Of ev'ry glove that laid him down
And cut him till he cried out
In his anger and his shame,
"I am leaving, I am leaving."
But the fighter still remains.

The Boxer, Simon and Garfunkel

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