Nashville and Red Lipstick

Updated: Jul 24, 2020



Should I decide this will be my last dog?

This one at my feet?

I don’t want to get another one

that has to outlive me,

that has to come to see me in the hospice

Or wear a bandana at the cemetery.

And then go back to the rescue.

When should I accept that I won’t go to Nashville

And sing at the Grand Ol’ Opry?

Accept that banjo lessons are a waste of time?

(Not just for me but for everyone.)

And when should I give up the fight with my hair?

Settle for grey steel and not soft gold?

And concede I am not as funny as I think I am.

My mother never gave up.

Not like me.

Weeks after she died

the parcels still arrived.

She planted tulips for the next spring,

She never imagined life ended,

Things unmended

She died waiting for batteries for her hearing aid.

Maybe I’ll get tired of Nashville,

Of crossword answers slipping out of reach,

Of forgotten words like so much fluff in my mouth,

Then I’ll stop searching for the perfect red lipstick.

I won’t remember the arc

But I will remember the fall,

The arrow coming to land

Somewhere I can’t find.


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