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
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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