“The Meaning of Life and Love in Casablanca” by Jenean McBrearty




The Meaning of Life and Love in Casablanca


Rick told Ilsa

In the great scheme of things

Little people don’t matter

When the world blows up.

Little Ilsa leaves with Lazlo,

Leaves her heart in Casablanca,

Leaves as Mrs. Lazlo,

A patriot’s appendage.


No one on the movie set

Knew how it should end.

Can anything trump romance?

Transcend passion?

And be believed?

The plane soars,

A metaphor that answers

All questions with

An engine force of yes,

When the world blows up.


Greater love for men

Means giving up life for another.

Greater life for women

Means giving up love for another.

Each gender,

Fragile, tender.

Why must their lives blow up

All over the world?


photo by Pepper Jones

photo by Pepper Jones

Jenean McBrearty is a graduate of San Diego State University, and former community college instructor who taught Political Science and Sociology. She received the EKU English Department’s Award for Graduate Non-fiction (2011), and has been published in Main Street Rag Anthology—Altered States, Wherever It Pleases, Danse Macabre, bioStories, Cobalt Review, Dew of the Kudzu, Nazar Look, and Black Lantern, among a slew of others. Her novel, The Ninth Circle, was published by Barbarian Books. Her novel, Raphael Redcloak, was serialized by Jukepop.





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