June 6 Poetry and Events

Listen to a poetry reading of the 2022 version of “Until the End.”

Flashback to June 6, 1999:

Some highlights of the day, my favorite being the UK’s #1 Song: Everybody’s Free (To Wear Sunscreen) – Baz Luhrmann. A mix of music and spoken word, absolutely worth the listen. That one’s been in my Spotify liked songs for quite some times.

Meanwhile, in the US #1 Song: If You Had My Love – Jennifer Lopez. Clearly the UK had the better choice in the music department.

Of course, there was also the largest jailbreak in Brazilian history. And Anne Haddy, the Australian actress passed away.

And finally, June 6, 1999, was the birthday of this poem. In 2010, eleven years after its birth, it found publication in the literary journal Legendary.

Here it is, on its 23rd birthday…(and I ask: Are you older or younger than this poem?)

Until The End 

Too often I am fed 
only my inadequacies. 
My right arm too weak to hold 
up the ceiling.  And in the left 
my still-born son. 

My legs that could not run fast  
enough to catch my ghost as 
she left me. 

I could not be nourished on these. 
My weakness ever starving me. 

Yet, constant is my blood pulsing, 
never surrendering.  Even after defeat. 
Even after I am captured. 

Always, the sacrifice dies screaming, 
kicking violently at the face of God. 
Once she is tied to the stake, and 
the torch is pressed to the timber 
the vow is made stronger.  Fire 
burns belief hotter. 

The damned cannot alter allegiance. 
It is too late.  Conviction is forever. 

This is my strength:  In all of my failure 

I have not surrendered. 

(c) Kay Kestner - 1999

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