Poetry

The Saviour

El Salvador,

Thirty-three,

On New Year’s Day,

A child is born

And christened, Alicia,

Meaning in English:

“Of noble character”.

16 of 800, as a percentage, is two,

And, as a young woman, she was one,

At MIT, added to their number,

And John Forbes Nash Jr.

Was her irrational Other;

The manifold genius,

As complex and elusive as

Equilibrium,

And as handsome a bundle of fibre

As a girl could hope to reconcile.

“Devotion” is a word not much used these days,

To a Catholic, it’s “an expression of love and fidelity”;

And, “commitment” means something else entirely,

When your husband is diagnosed

Schizophrenic

And then, by addition, for perdition,

Your son.

Shakespeare’s mercy is one thing-

Twice blessed- it’s true

But true compassion

Is double its worth,

Reckoning on no reciprocation,

Ergo, a perfect

Analogy for love.

So, the Laureate’s true genius was surely to find

Alicia Esther Larde Lopez-Harrison,

Because the only thing greater than a beautiful mind

Is the grace of a generous, compassionate companion.

 

                                                                 ~ Stephen Lang

                                                                  El Salvador

 

John Ogden Nash Jr (Nobel Laureate and schizophrenia sufferer), and his devoted wife Alicia, died together in a tragic car crash on the New Jersey Turnpike, on May 23rd, five years ago today.

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