Saturday, April 14, 2007

They Played The Part So Well

They Played The Part So Well

‘Farewell’ said she, and I felt sure… my heart about to tear
In two… thank God ‘tis only one part of the tale I share…

Our fated lot, the leading parts in one of Willy’s plays
(A fairer acting partner I’d not met in all my days).
And I the more enthused as we together read the script…
Kisses here and there ‘I’ll take it’; she remained tight-lipped.
The morning she consented was a day I’ll not forget…
The day I claimed the part of Romeo… she, Juliet.

Reviewers touted our first night ‘a stunning great debut!’
‘They played the part so well,’ and oh, the half they never knew.
For who were we to alter script that called for lips contacting?
And who were we to tell the Guild that we, no longer acting
Would linger in those moments, and begin to know for certain
Our tendrilled hearts would beat the same, no matter where the curtain!

Act 3, Scene 5, ‘Farewell, Farewell! One kiss and I’ll descend.’
And she’d reply ‘Art thou gone so, love-lord, ay husband-friend?’
The more she called me ‘husband’ ah, the more I wished I were…
And with each ‘Farewell’ I said, the more I dreaded missing her.
For now by Shakespeare’s hand my role would be to Mantua banished;
Knowing that when next we meet my Juliet will have vanished.

And one night, in the final scene I touched her lifeless eyes…
‘Good Lord’ I thought, and listened… watching for her chest to rise.
She lay so still, so spiritless, I felt my ghost take flight…
I gladly gave my soul to her, so loved her I that night.
‘Thus with a kiss I die’ I fell… and laying there I knew
Tomorrow I would ask her to become a Montague.

The next night with the curtain I too fell on bended knee
And with a rose I breathed it ‘Juliet, wilt thou marry me?’
Blood pounding in my heart and ears drowned out the crowd’s ovation.
We stood, we kissed, I waited for her word in rapt elation.
And then with trembling lips ‘Oh sudden love… I cannot tell…’
She turned and ran off with the rose and left me with ‘Farewell!’

So cold that icy word had dropped… so cruel and firmly placed.
‘Did not her heart beat fast as mine each time that we embraced?’
She left the play, the town, my world… and vanished as though dead.
Alas, with broken heart I played the part again that said…
Act 2, Scene 2, ‘Love goes toward love as schoolboys from their books;’
(And here was I) ‘But love from love, toward school with heavy looks.’

I have no way of knowing just how long I wandered thus,
Bleary-eyed and lovesick, wishing her and I were ‘us’.
Till one night at a Masquerade I spied her ‘mongst the crowd.
I knew her eyes through her disguise, and called her name aloud…
‘Where dwells the rose I gave thee when we in the last scene kissed?’
Said she, ‘Tis in my heart and lives in amaranthine mist.’

We married then in haste (I’ll say, almost not quick enough)!
And folks agreed, we looked the part of fairy-tale stuff.
The lesson here? Do not lose heart if first you have been spurned;
In asking women for their hand, here’s something I have learned…
These fickle creatures who can tell, no more than predict fate?
But when love’s dagger sinks, true love is always worth the wait!

‘Tis here the tale ends my friend, the rest too good to tell.
I hear my Juliet calling now… to you I say, ‘Farewell!’

© Ciprianowords Inc. 2007

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