Monday, March 21, 2016

My Husband

C.E. Murphy '85
This morning I read a poem, The Hockey Poem, by Robert Bly.  It reminded me of my husband, a hockey fan and former goalie coach.  As the poet describes the goalie's movements, I could picture my husband, not only performing the same actions, and teaching the same, but more  how his personality is a perfect fit for the position of a hockey goalie.  He is part of the action, yet apart.  He's not in the thick of it, but he's definitely in it.  He's alert to everything.  He's got your back.  You don't have to worry, he's in the net.

This picture of a poster was given to him by the Narducci family, when hubby was coaching goal, at Medway High School.  It's a caricature of the coach yelling contradictory commands to the goalie.  Let me correct that, "seemingly contradictory."  It seems that way because the coach is telling the goalie "to come out", yet "get back", "slide left-slide right", etc.  Such is the position of the hockey goalie.

The Hockey Poem
Robert Bly

The Goalie

        The Boston College team has gold helmets, under which the long black hair of the Roman centurion curls out...And they begin.  How weird the goalies look with their African masks!  The goalie is so lonely anyway, guarding a basket with nothing in it, his wide lower legs wide as ducks'...No matter what gift he is given, he always rejects it....He has a number like 1, a name like Mrazek, sometimes wobbling on his legs waiting for the puck, or curling up like a baby in the womb to hold it, staying a second too long on the ice.
       The goalie has gone out to mid-ice, and now he sails sadly back to his own box, slowly; he looks prehistoric with his rhinoceros legs; he looks as if he's going to become extinct, and he's just taking his time....
       When the players are at the other end, he begins sadly sweeping the ice in front of his house; he is the old witch in the woods, waiting for the children to come home.

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