Saturday, January 12, 2013

Queen of the Car Club

Viejitos Car Club boasts cars like this one.
Today I attended the grave site service for a former colleague and a beautiful person, Sylvia. She and I were the same vintage -- she was just 7 months older than I. Today, hundreds of people--many of them members of various Albuquerque car clubs, like the Viejitos--mourned her passing, attending the rosary/mass, or the cemetery service, or both. And they celebrated her life with shiny cars, pans of red and green chile enchiladas, plates piled high with tortillas and tamales, and music, conversation, and hugs. I knew only a few of the other guests--we had worked together for a short time at ATI where Sylvia's reputation for genuine warmth and caring was universally acknowledged among staff, faculty, and students, alike. I am honored to have known her.

After I left the reception, I attended a local New Mexico State Poetry Society chapter meeting at which we were given a prompt to write in a style called Rhyme Royal. Because Sylvia was very much still on my mind, my "rhyme" wrote itself in her honor:

Queen of the Car Club
The cars drove up the hill in single file.
In each at least one mourner, maybe two--
all were dressed in black, a few in style
adorned with pink for Syliva, her hue.
The vintage Chevys and Buicks paid homage due
to her for whom they all had prayed with tears
as cancer took her smiles, her life, her years.
 [I'll likely write more stanzas about the day, but wanted to share this before the rose fades.]

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