Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Powerful Poem

I was doing some work tonight, subtly bemoaning the fact that I had to work yet another late night to try to stay on track with all the busy things going on at my bookstore. The task required waiting several minutes while files uploaded to the server, which is the perfect kind of task for me to play catch up on my RSS feeds.

Then, scanning a blog post from Seth Godin, which pointed to this video, blew my mind.

This video features the lovely and amazing performance poet Gabrielle Bouliane performing for the audience at the Austin Poetry Slam.

This would be her last public performance.

Gabrielle was diagnosed with Stage Four Cancer shortly before this video was filmed. She fought hard, but her fight ended January 29, 2010. She was surrounded by family and friends, and her passing was in a very quiet, peaceful room full of love and affection.

I love her powerful, frank and moving words.

And I'm appreciate that I have a job I love so much that I find myself working past midnight just to catch up. How damn lucky I am to be blessed with such a fun and challenging job that I get to go to each day, and to also have such a wonderful and supportive family to return home to each night.

It will be 3 years ago tomorrow that my mother in law finally lost a long and painful fight against cancer and the side-effect the treatment (which allowed her to beat her cancer) had on her heart, which eventually weakened beyond repair. Like so many other people in my life, she was taken away from us at too young an age.

Dianne, like Gabrielle, was brave and embraced life with passion.

So, while I'm plucking away at this work, I'm also thinking about all those wonderful people who have made my life better just by being in it -- and again, think about how lucky a bastard I am.

Thanks, Gabrielle, for helping me keep it all in perspective.

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