The Way of Pain

He tries to stay light on his feet.

His name is not Muhammed Ali.
He does not float like a butterfly,
he does not sting like a bee.
No—he has feet of clay,
and they weigh heavily.
Gloved fists pound his belly,
and each blow lifts him
from those mired soles.

His own hands throw no punch.
They are wrapped in cloth tape
and are raised to guard his face
from blows that never rain.
He leaves his gut exposed
so fists may pummel.

Do his his ribs fracture?
They certainly have, and healed
only to rebreak and reknit.
In this way they grow stronger.

This is rehearsal, not sparring.
This is preparation for 12 rounds
years or a decade distant.
This is his way, the way of pain—
this his truth, this his life.
He will wear no belt
without this truth, this pain.

Pay one day to watch him fight,
pay—and pray, per view.
Pray for the crack of ribs,
pray to mend—to be rebroken.

About Greg Wright

I have worn many hats as a writer and editor over the years. Unlike my scholarly and journalistic work from the "old days" at Hollywood Jesus, Past the Popcorn, or SeaTac Blog, the writing here is of a more overtly personal and spiritual nature. I hope it provokes you as much as it provokes me.
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