Friday, August 29, 2014


small town with a huge marquee.
water and sewer superintendent
of the 20th century.  star football
player enters dramatic theatrical
foray: plays lead male in senior play
opposite gramma.  whom he barely
knew.  except with whom he had
(for a variety of unrelated reasons,
reportedly) often found himself red-
faced in argument.  dapper red-face
often contorted into a look of utter
bewilderment.  could skew more at
stupefaction.  for numerous reasons.
but who, gramma, in the play, would
say something (more strict from the
script but, pointing finger, to the tune
of) ‘i’m gonna keep my eyes on you, mister,
even if i have to stare at your face from
across our kitchen table every breakfast-
dinner-supper every gosh-durn day for the
rest of my life.’ seventy or so years later
she meant those words script-free,
all inside her body and especially
way down into her heart, no longer
just in character in some small-town
production.  even  though her 1940s
were now tucked neatly into a dime-
store novel that could only be reached
by beckoning the airwaves.  even he’d
been gona already for a decade.  of
that grand story and its long run
on east main street, sixty years of
no small-town marriage, she’d be
happy to remind anyone who cared
until she repaired her crooked joints
down into the sunken bed beside him.