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AND THEN I WROTE . . . VANITIY OF VANITIES A Corrida with Comments from Ecclesiastes By Edwin Cohen To every thing there is a season, And a time to every purpose under heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; A time to kill, and a time to heal; A time to seek, and a time to lose; A time to love, and a time to hate; A time for war, and a time for peace. The time had come for his grand entrance. The small square of sunlight at the far end of the long, dark corridor invited him into the bright sun-drenched arena. The comfort and security of the cool, shady waiting year lay behind him as he was thrust into the world of life—and death. As he burst into the ring with swift, powerful strides, a distant, lonely trumpet sounded twice, first short, then long. Vanity of vanities, all is vanity. Defiantly and with confidence born of strength and courage, he bolted across the warm sand, stopped, and tossed his head in challenge. He glanced about and surveyed the circle of yellow that was to enclose his battlefield, remotely aware of the myriad eyes focused on him. All the eyes watched him, and would continue to watch him during the next few moments as he fulfilled his raison d’etre; as he accomplished his sole purpose in life; as he died. That which has been is that which shall be, And that which hath been done Is that which shall be done; And there is nothing new under the sun. The hot Castillian sun made him keenly aware of his great strength. He could feel its warmth loosening the large, well-defined muscles of back and legs. At the same time it sharpened the senses that controlled the awesome force of those muscles. The fresh, clean air made his entire body feel alive and vibrant. Strength and courage radiated from his being. He wanted to move, to fight, to feel the exhilaration of contact and combat. He wanted to show his strength and courage, his might and power. Then he had his opportunity. From behind the wooden railing which encircled the arena, stepped a brightly arrayed figure which cautiously approached and beckoned a challenge to him. The figure goaded and coaxed him to charge. His muscles tensed and he bolted toward the figure, confident that he would meet and destroy it. As he charged, he expected the dynamic feeling of his body being jarred by contact. He anticipated feeling the resistance of the object as he A L I V E E A S T 20 B A Y o c t o b e r 2 0 1 6


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