My Secret Loves: Opera

When I first saw “Rent”
I was aware almost immediately
That this was a version of “La Boheme”
An opera I had loved for years

Saturday afternoons
In my tiny apartment
With the sounds of the Metropolitan Opera

And the story
Of starving artists,
Living and dying in their joyous poverty
Stirred my very soul

As did stories of doomed love,
Mistaken identities,
Or even nuns singing joyfully to
Their persecuted deaths*

Opera, like musical theater,
Exists in a world beyond this one;
At least, for me

[* “doomed love” = “La Traviata” and numerous other tragic operas; “mistaken identities” = “The Marriage of Figaro” and numerous other comic operas; “nuns singing joyfully” is from “Dialogues of the Carmelites” and that last scene almost killed me. – Owen]

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