for some semantics…

for some semantics

i was telling aunt bea
about
a friend
of mine
that works
in a nursing home
and
how she said
that
some elderly
are
so confused
that they talk
about
people who’ve died
as if
they’re still alive
aunt bea
took a deep breath
and
said
there are people
on the periphery
of
your life
who’ve passed on
that we say
i knew them
but
there are others
whose love is so implanted
in our hearts and souls
that they are
always
talked about as
i know
so and so
for you see
they are
still alive
a living memory
of
true love

self-imprisonment…

maybe today

yesterday
when
i visited
aunt bea
i was looking
through
an old photo album
pictures
of
her
when
she was young
and
i asked
how often
she looked
at
the photos
aunt bea
said
not often
not because
memories
can’t warm
the heart
but
the things
you used to do
can end up
restricting 
what you do
today
they can build
a cage
that prevents
you from
exploring life
so
you have to
adapt
and
squezze
through the bars
of
yesterday
and
continue
to explore
and
enjoy
what life
has to offer
now

 

perfection…

Perfection

for the longest time
i’ve wanted
to ask
aunt bea
why she keeps those
far less
than
perfect
childhood sculptures
we made
mixed in
with
her
fine porcelain
aunt bea
said
those of us
who have
maintained
some level of sanity
are aware
of
our imperfections
and
are able to
carry on
while some folks
fervently pursue
what does not
exist
perfection
becoming
paralyzed
absorbed
into
the social madness
of
life
those early
artistic endeavors
of yours
were made
with
love
and
innocence
and as such
are
perfect

it’s not always obvious…

it's not always obvious

stopped
by
aunt bea’s
to
deliver
some
costco items
she
had asked for
i told aunt bea
that
i had
had
a very
interesting conversation
with
an elderly woman
who was in
one of those
electric shopping carts
the kind
with
a small basket
in front
which seemed to me
to be
ill-suited
for
a warehouse market
a market
that
generally
sells supersize items
and
that basket couldn’t
have held more
than
two or three
of
anything
but
we had a nice visit
however
i said to aunt bea
i still can’t
figure out
why
she just didn’t
order the items online
and
have them delivered
aunt bea
smiled
and
said
maybe she wasn’t
shopping
for
any particular item
but for
what you provided

 

 

quarantine…


i suppose

out

of

a level

of

self pity

i called

aunt bea

to

see

how she was doing

without

visiting

her friends

and

to

lightheartedly

complain

about

my imposed celibacy

aunt bea

gave a giggle

and said

well

a number

of

my old friends

have

a hard time

getting around

these days

so

visits

were

infrequent

before the pandemic

and

as for your

celibacy

you’ll find

there comes

a point

in

aging

when

passionate romance

becomes

a mere memory

from the window an old pokey pickup truck…

i’ve spent
quite a few
sleepless nights
during
this
quarantine period
trying
to
measure aspects
of
my life
and
wondering
how others
could have
just
now
begun
to
appreciate
the struggles confronting
those
all around them
since
aunt bea
has lived
through
so much
i thought
i’d give her
call
and
asked
her opinion
aunt bea
said
the pace
of
our daily routines
blurs
our views
of
of life’s journey
keeping
what we’ve seen
or
what
we could have seen
out of focus
perhaps
the pandemic has
forced us
to
slow down
and
see
what’s been
right
in front of us
the whole time
we just
needed
to slow down
a bit
to feel
the pain
of
others

 

never eat a mushroom unless you can positively identify it…

i got
aunt bea
a new iphone
so
we could
do
a little facetime
while
we’re confined
to
our respective
homes
we were
reminiscing
about
my inability
as
a youth
to
distinguish mushrooms
that
were edible
from
those
that were
poisonous
i suppose
it’s
a bit
like
picking
the right president
aunt bea
said
sometimes
we can’t choose
for
ourselves
and
every now
and
then
that can be
a good thing
but
we must always
be
observant
and
actively engaged
just
in case
those who
chose
for
us
made
a serious
mistake

 

prayer or staged devotion…

after so much
dialogue
about prayer
this
past week
i was wondering
what
aunt bea
thought
about
all this
public
combat
on
religious observances
so
i stopped by
on
my way home
from
work
she said
public prayer
lets folks
know
you
have something
in
common
with them
or
serves
as
a
how great i art
vulgar
marketing ploy
but
private prayer
lets you
have
an uninterrupted conversation
with
the divine
it makes
folks
feel
better
to
have expressed
what
is already known
one thing’s for sure
prayer
for
power
is not
the same
as
the
power
of
prayer

 

recognition…

unannounced
i stopped by
aunt bea’s
to
complain
about
not being
appreciated
at
work
before
even saying
hello
i began
my
diatribe
but
she stopped me
and
with
a blank look
on
her face
asked
who are you
thinking
she might be having
a memory issue
i said
i’m your nephew
don’t you remember
she said
of course
i
know
who
you are
but
i
wanted you
to feel the emotion
of
being
forgotten
since
at
work
they’ll
barely recall
you
were ever there
once
you leave
but
only family
real family
those defined
by
a loving relationship
not
necessarily by blood
will hold you
in their hearts
until
their hearts
cease to be

 

need-to-know basis…

aunt bea
was
sitting
on her back porch
when
i heard
her say
lord
lord
lord
these folks
sure
got their nerve
when
i asked
what was wrong
she
said
these funeral parlors
keep
sending me notices
about
how
i can save family members
the inconvenience
of
disposing
of
my corpse
by
prepaying them
for
services
to be rendered
at
some date in the future
she said
now
i’m not opposed
to
helping family out
but
the frequency
and
urgency
of
these mailings
is
starting
to make me wonder
if
they know
something
i
don’t