Sunday, January 24, 2016

Four Grandmas

1. This one used to be pretty like a movie star she ran away to california she was a homeless person for a while she wrote long poems and put them in birthday cards she divorced she delivered mail in the metal furniture factory she married the son of the owner the owner was mad she baked pies she smoked cigarettes she lived in institutions sometimes when she didn't take her medication she didn't roll down the car windows in the summer she slept in the den she smoked on the porch and dad yelled at her and she left her cheeks were bright pink with the lupus she liked to sit at the bar of the rod n gun and scratch scratch-offs she went to the indian casino too maybe she was friendly she died   in the hospital

2. I was ghosting around the bay, eating chips and a pill to slow the dying, afraid to disagree with anyone who was kind, who might be kind.

3. This one taught third grade and piano the corners of her mouth turned down she wore a wig the doctors gave her the wrong medicine and her hair fell out she prayed the rosary every time she got in the car she loved the teacher who taught her to teach back home when you study music in the university there you learn to play every instrument in the orchestra and she did she grew orchids and the fruits we eat back home she bought so many useful things they couldn't be used they were still in the packages she declared bankruptcy twice she baked biscotti she pointed out faults real and possible she prayed every morning and wrote in her journal every night when she traveled she made collages she traveled with the priest her heart had leg veins in it she was treasured she died   suddenly at home

4. When my hair grew back, I found it harder to smile than to pray. The prayers said: "body, what now?"