She Asks Me
What I'm going to do about ageism in the community.
I look at her from behind the safety of long panel tables
Face skeptical, wrinkles accusatory. I call on
The elephant-- look eighty years straight in its eyes--
The word is pressing. My jaw looses
It death. She considers me. I am more afraid of my mouth
Than she looks. Sixty years my elder, I address her
In the we. We have gone on will go on unbelieving
That our families are real. The way I came this morning,
Flimsy under fingers of another woman. Desire
Not real. Need-- lies. And one day we, you and me,
Really won't be. Those lines in your face-- the time we wasted
Unbelieving ourselves real-- arrive here
At the shrieking or bellowing fear-- they'll forget us just the same.