Gabby Beck ’23 Awarded First Place in “Inspired by KPAC”

Texas Public Radio’s “Inspired by KPAC” is an annual contest open to entrants age 13-19 from an 11-county region of south central Texas to showcase their musical performance, artistic, and writing talents inspired by classical music. TMI junior Gabby Beck was announced as a top 6 finalist in the Written Word category for her poem “Bittersweet” earlier in January. On January 22nd, she was awarded first place and $1,000. Her poem was narrated on live radio and webcast.

At TMI, Gabby participates in varsity swim, varsity cross country, varsity track, the Corps of Cadets, Student Council, Culinary Club, Write House volunteer editing, Latin Club, and is a Student Ambassador.

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“Bittersweet: A story of my grandmother’s dementia”
By Gabrielle Beck
Inspired by “Clair de Lune” by Claude Debussy

The memories melt

Subtle and slow at first

Where did I place my purse, my keys?

Did I sign that check?

Masked by nodding, acknowledgement, and vagaries

Then, no longer driving me to the apple orchard

No longer baking homemade cinnamon rolls before dawn

No longer reading mystery novels curled up by the fire

No longer playing the piano, swaying with fluid keystrokes, head tilted down with that slight curl in your lip from intensity and passion as you play Clair de Lune

Slipping away

The past becomes unfamiliar

The future holds nothing tangible

But, there is laughter in the moment

A sarcastic movie line, silly dog running in circles, grandson blowing bubbles

And there are fleeting glimpses of recollection

An old song on the radio from the Beetles where you belt the refrain

And the piano concerto that breathes life into your fingers again

For an instant you are back with me

The flow of notes

Runs through your ears and a spark of recognition ignites

Like your childhood stream

Your legs are carried by song back to the wedding dance

The glow in your eyes when surrounded by loved ones

Flooding with warm embrace

Music imprinted on the soul

Yet, just like the outro, colorful faces of the past fade again

They are out of reach

Emptiness invades this precious space

Forgotten tears slowly trickle down your face


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