Sea and Shore ~ Poem by Henry van Dyke

Music, I yield to thee;

        As swimmer to the sea

     I give my Spirit to the flood of song:

        Bear me upon thy breast

        In rapture and at rest,

     Bathe me in pure delight and make me strong;

        From strife and struggle bring release,

     And draw the waves of passion into tides of peace.

        Remember’d songs, most dear,

        In living songs I hear,

     While blending voices gently swing and sway

        In melodies of love,

        Whose mighty currents move,

     With singing near and singing far away;

        Sweet in the glow of morning light,

     And sweeter still across the starlit gulf of night.

        Music, in thee we float,

        And lose the lonely note

     Of self in thy celestial-ordered strain,

        Until at last we find

        The life to love resigned

     In harmony of joy restored again;

        And songs that cheered our mortal days

     Break on the coast of light in endless hymns of praise.

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It’s Not Unusual

It’s two days since La Flor, LC, and I attended the famous writer, Francine Peony’s party. La Flor and LC went to case the house and report to Big Carmen. Me? I was listed on the invitation and hoped I’d meet her literary agent. Instead, I met Vinnie, one of Big Carmen’s enforcers, a senior citizen security guard, and I was insulted by Francine Peony. La Flor told me Big Carmen runs the most exciting organization in the city. I know she and LC are cooking up a scheme to break into Francine’s 12,000 square foot home soon. Let see what they’re up to.

I’m watching La Flor speaking excitedly to someone on her cell.

“Yes.”

“Yes.”

“Okay.”

“It’s all set?”

“You are the master. If LC ever leaves me, I’m yours.”

La Flor shuts her cell down, gives LC a thumbs up then looks at me, “That was Big Carmen. The three of us are going in tonight. Peony is going to an invitation only wine tasting event, followed by dinner at the Skylark. I don’t understand why I didn’t get an invite. When we’re in her house, if I find my invite, she’s in big trouble.”

“Yah, she’s in big trouble and that starts with P,” said boy genius, LC.

“Close, LC. I’m not going,” I said.

“Ray, Ray, Ray. You are the slow learner. I have three words for you that might help you make a better decision,” said La Flor.

“They better be good, because I’m not going.”

“Use wants me to says them?” said LC.

“Let’s take turns. Keep an eye on him to see when he caves in,” said La Flor.

“Ray, first word. Vinnie.”

“Ray-mo, second word, Rocco.”

My pulse rate is elevated. My heart in knocking so loudly against my chest cavity, I may have a noise complaint filed against me with the HOA.”

“Ray, third word, Tony.”

10 hours later.

I look at my cell, it’s nine-forty-five. We’re on the street where she lives. That line reminds me of a song (apologies to My Fair Lady). My car is parked against the curb, we’re sitting and waiting. Another car pulls up a hundred yards ahead on the opposite side of the street. The driver turns the lights off. The car looks familiar. I’m trying to place it.

La Flor and LC stop kissing for the moment. La Flor tapped me on the shoulder, “Ray, pull up to that car, put my window down and let me do the talking. Just smile. Is that asking too much?”

“Who’s in the car? I asked.

“O’Leary. He told LC he was on stakeout tonight. LC, genius that he is, asked him where. O’Leary told him. If I find the snitch, they’re off my Christmas list. I bet it was the mystery blog writer. She sticks her nose into everything.”

“It’s big enough,” said LC.

“Why do you want to talk to O’Leary? He’s a cop?” I asked.

“Ray, Ray, Ray have a little faith in me,” said La Flor. Sorry Bon Jovi, the song came to mind.

That’s my trouble, I have too little faith in her.

I pull up next to a beat up 15 year old Saturn. They don’t make them anymore.

La Flor’s window is down, “Hi O’Leary, we’ve been looking all over for you.”

“I’m on a secret steak out (that’s how he said it). Nobody knows except the twenty or so people I  told. Man, this is tough duty. I’m starvin, Marvin.”

“Use talking about Marvin Brightwater, the basketball player,” asked LC.

“No. I was talking bout Marvin Schlopes, he owns Donut Heaven on the other side of time. He’s closed now. I could go for a dozen glazed. They’re no calories, they’re so light.”

“Well, O’Leary, I’ve got good news and bad news for you. Which do you want first?” said La Flor.

“I don’t think I can take much more bad news. Netflix went up on the subscription. I ran out of body soap, so I was using shampoo for body soap, and when it was time to wash my hair I didn’t have any shampoo left. I got stuck on the toilet and realized I forgot to put a new roll on. I accidentally put the ice cream in the fridge instead of the freezer.”

I couldn’t take anymore. “Please, La Flor, tell O’Leary the good news.”

“Joey’s donut Shop is open late tonight. He’s got a special going for an hour and a half. Any policeman who shows up gets all the free donuts they can eat.”

“It’s not unusual (Sorry Tom Jones) for the chains. How come Joey’s staying open?” asked O’Leary.

“My cousins, Vinnie, Rocco, and Tony suggest to Joey to toss a benefit for the cops. They’re peoples after all,” said LC.

“Use guys wanna watch the house for me?” O’Leary pleaded.

“Love to, but we’re on mission to help someone get down off her lofty perch.”

“Is she under suicide watch? I saw an NCIS film once about that,” ask O’Leary.

La Flor turned to me. I shrugged.

LC said, “Let me handle it.”

‘The beautiful, tough, and edgy wonder woman is a trained shrinkologist.”

“Good luck guys. It’s quiet around here. I’m heading to Joey’s.”

O’Leary turned on the lights, the siren. peeled rubber, and was off to Joeys.

La Flor said, “We’re going in and that means you too, Ray.”

“Huh?”

I’m caught in a trap, I can’t look back, … sorry Elvis, the song came to mind. Come on by tomorrow to catch the action.