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  • Keith Banner

Mary

mary has dementia

that is the way it goes

like her mother

but somehow worse


she fell at the dollar

store yesterday

had to go to the hospital

all her dreams got


lost somewhere

between

the dollar store and

the emergency room


let's not get

too sentimental

but really she was a dead-on

liz taylor lookalike


when she was young

voluptuously

making chocolate-covered cherries

stored overnight


in the refrigerator

to set

all her plans kind of

kept away from the world


by everything she wanted them

to be

and her husband

well it wasn't something we want to


really talk about

how do you make all of it go away?

that was in her eyes

most of the time, that need to make it all go away


in the 80s, 90s,

2000s and beyond

but she kept trying

and everything kind of collapsed


around her

until she needed

to collapse

at the dollar store yesterday


staying up at night

unable to sleep

speaking in tongues

and also maybe


singing

nut-job hymns

that make sense

once you live beyond


your life

and all your kids

either terrible disappointments

or ignoring you because


you love

them and

it gets into faulkner territory

every house she lived in


as a married lady

burned

to the ground

and yet


i remember her as

my aunt

who tried so hard to make things

nice


who wanted it all to

go away so she could replace it

with

carpets and pillows


and when it's over

she will be ok

when it is over

she will be


in her element

roses and

bibles

and violins



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