Track 42 – 50 Ways To Say Goodbye

Throughout my life, I have broken all of my toes, my right foot, right knee, both thumbs, right arm, left elbow and left shoulder. I have been burned, cut, smacked, gashed, and even throttled. I have been tossed from the roof of a car once or twice and fallen from my scooter or motorcycle at least a dozen times. However, for me one of the most painful things that I have had to endure was heartbreak.

The thing about broken bones, cuts and bruises, is that the intrinsic pain of these wounds starts to fade away relatively soon after the injury is incurred. (Granted, my injuries haven’t been as traumatic as they could have been! All things considered, I am a pretty lucky fool!) Conversely, the intense throb experienced as a result of heartbreak lingers and has the potential for much more devastating effects. At least this was true for me the first time I felt my heart crack.

I was in grade twelve. I had seen it coming for months. I just figured or hoped that if I let things ride it would all get better. (I know. Rookie mistake. What can I say? I was young.) She asked me to go for a drive. We never went for drives. She told me that she would pick me up. She never picked me up. I knew this was it, but I still blinded myself to what was about to happen. I was too immature and naïve to the dark side of love to understand the storm that was heading my way.

She drove us out to the power dam in her father’s old hatchback, stopped the car and just stared at me for a moment. I can only imagine what she was thinking,

“Can’t you see what’s happening, you fool? Say something!”

“Five more minutes and I’m done with this.”

“La la la la.”

Really, I have no clue. Everything that happened from the minute she stopped the car until she dropped me back of at home remains a bit of a blur. I do recall feeling something inside fracture, shedding some tears, begging for another chance and the slam of a door. Other than that I am at a loss.

I recall going through the entire breakup process from denial straight through to acceptance. Regrettably, however, I spent far too much time at anger and lashed out in extremely inappropriate ways trying to deal with the hurt and betrayal that I was experiencing. 50 Ways To Say Goodbye, by Train, brought me back to those days. It also inspired me to write this poem which is very loosely based on how I dealt with my pain. (Although, I would love to get me some spurs. Yee haw!)

El Diablo

On the northern border of a southern town,

He walked out the doorway as the sun dropped down,

He turned his head and tipped his hat,

Blew her a kiss and that was that.

The clink of metal from his spurs as he strolled,

Was his only farewell, strong, definite, bold,

She leaned on her pillow, and stared at his wake,

She knew he was gone, and was feeling the ache,

How could it be that a man of such style,

Could play such a game of deception and guile?

She’d heard all the tales, but chose not to believe,

A stallion with grace wouldn’t bed down and leave,

When they met, his eyes gleamed as he spoke of devotion,

His sweet talking words dripped with heartfelt emotion,

Such purity, kindness that love only knew,

Diablo, Diablo, the legend was true.

She sighed then laid back in a cradle of feathers,

The air, it still smelled of his musk and his leathers,

Just a pawn in his game of unscrupulous lust,

She cringed as she tasted her first seed of distrust.

She tasted the poison he’d left on her lips,

And felt her heart rolling towards an eclipse.

Rewind

On the northern border of a southern town,

She remained on her pillow, bed sheets turned down,

He turned his head and tipped his hat,

His conquest completed, he needed to scat.

The clink of metal from his spurs as he strolled,

Like his heart, left in ruins, bitter and cold.

His conquest completed, he still felt heartbreak,

She left him and nothing could cure his heartache.

How could it be that a man of such style,

Could be so naïve as to let her beguile,

His love and his passion, gave her chance to deceive,

She’d used him, abused him, watched his heartstrings unweave.

And now, left in ruins, devoid of emotion,

He played the same game and spoke of devotion,

He spoke with a purity love only knew,

As soon as he bedded them, bid them adieu.

And then his head turned. Was he lost altogether?

He glanced back once more and thought about whether,

His actions made sense. Were they fair or unjust?

Should he let his life grow from that seed of distrust?

He had spread the poison she’d left on his lips,

Was it time to move on, grow past this eclipse?

Fast Forward

On the northern border of a southern town,

He sat on a knoll as the sun started down,

He turned to his wife, kissed her sweet lips,

Never again would he feel love’s eclipse.

I have learned that there is never a reason to allow anger or venom to hold a place in my heart. I have neither the time nor energy to waste on holding a grudge. Forgiveness is a selfish virtue because it allows me to simply let go and move on with my own life. It is peace.

Of course, I might need someone to remind me of this when the first boy breaks my little girl’s heart!

50 Ways to Say Goodbye youtube link

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