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145 lbs

Poem by Stephen D. Bolen

The Qargizine, Spring 2017 #6

I had taken my rise to power

Each dance on a ring,

The boundaries of my moments,

The mat—always free.

I would hit the skulls

Crash down upon frames of all

Unlucky souls.

Bands around our ankles

We fought and bled to clocks

—and I was untouchable.

My graceful counters,

The legs I’d claim and quickly set down.

My rounds and the machine

My body had become.

Each movement as lightening, yet placed

So accurately as thread breaking through

Needles barriers, my pride—I matched.

In the golden armor I was lifted

Out of this darkness

Into raw instinct.

Some would cower, all would fall,

The opponents of my life

Would be held to their bounded backs.

I composed history in the honest form

Of technique

Undeniably my arm would rise,

Then I found defeat—

Handed to me by a faceless stance,

In a breath, under the light, I lost

My name, my dream, my passion,

My pride.

My hands had been strong,

My hands had been faithful,


then at my side,

my hand did not rise.

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