She Said

She said:

"Did you know I had a lover once?"

Eyes locked across the church aisle,

symphonies hand-in-hand. Puzzle pieces.

"He crossed the Berlin Wall in 1959,

so I married your father instead."

She said:

"It would be nice if you moved back, dear."

Back to Germany, to slanting red-tiled roofs,

to canola fields waving powdery gold,

to fresh bread rolls and a thousand-year-old church,

to the village graveyard where her mother waits,

to the beach by the sighing sea.

"Once I'm out of here,

we'll all have coffee out in the garden."

She said:

"Don't forget to copy my autobiography

and make a backup file on USB.

Now where did you put those sleeping pills?

These people are quacks, they don't know

what they're doing. It hurts. Are you

listening to me?"

She slumped against the lysol-scented pillow,

a rustling paper doll in a mint-green gown.

Her son sat by the beeping hospital bed

and listened.