T Minus Two Type Two Diabetes and Other Passions

27Jun/131

Looking West

I live on the fifth floor of an apartment building west of downtown Kansas City. This building is thirty or forty yards from the edge of a very high bluff that leads down to the Kansas River. I don't at all know this to be true, but I've wondered if the first thing west of here at my elevation is in Colorado.

My apartment is in the northwest corner of my building. The views out my window are rather spectacular, especially at night: the part of Kansas City, Kansas I overlook is mostly warehouses and light industry, not all the attractive during the day. Nonetheless, I don't spend much time taking that view in.

This winter, there was for a time an exception to this. This year, rather than merely covering my window air conditioner to protect me from the pretty vigorous winds we get up here, my apartment maintenance folks removed it. This meant that I could actually look out the window as I sat watching television.

One night, late in the winter, I noticed that my view from my chair had one prominent feature, way out in the distance. It was a building much taller than anything around it and, lit up as it was, it was kind of beautiful. Then I noticed that a branch of the tree outside my window appeared to partially bisect the building, creating the illusion of a turreted castle. My imagination took hold of the idea that it was Camelot, the court of the legendary King Arthur, and I took to gazing at it, pondering without really thinking. I thought about what might have brought a person to travel to Camelot, and how they might have felt when they arrived.

This pondering eventually led to my writing this poem, which I'm rather proud of as an amateur effort. I initially felt a little awkward about the liberties I took with the legend, but I eventually decided that others had done far more violence to that storyline than I had.

Eventually, a more mundane curiosity overtook me, and a little research led me to conclude that my "Camelot" was the KCK/Wyandotte County city hall. That pretty much ended my romantic woolgathering, and a few weeks later it was ended completely by my air conditioner being restored to its rightful position. But it was fun while it lasted.

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  1. I’ve been on that bluff and you really do live in quite a spectacularly scenic area… if the weather’s right! ;)


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