Winter

It is only February

And I am sick of winter

Everything is black and white

And gray

Maybe a little beige.

I dimly remember color

Green I think

It was on a flower I saw once

Or maybe just dreamed.

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New Car

Today I am picking up my new car

It is big and steel gray and shiny

Quiet

Powerful

It only costs a million dollars

Not really but it’s more expensive than my first house and

Just a bit smaller.

I am going to drive it to the thrift store

And the gym and the supermarket

Park it next to muddy old jalopies.

A peacock

Surrounded by slum pigeons.

But knowing me

Next week my new car will be

Indistinguishable

From the others

Covered in the grime of ordinary life that

One experiences on back roads.

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Tattoos

You know what’s funny?

Old ladies with tattoos

I know they exist

Because I see them in the locker room

After old lady swimming class.

And you know they must have been hot stuff

Back in the day

Maybe hippies dancing all stoned with hair flying

Or motorcycle bitches in leather hugging thug boyfriends

Around the waist

Or maybe even soldier girls drunk in Okinawa.

Tattoos don’t let you forget

That you used to be those people.

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Pastimes

When I start writing poems

After 75 years

I have lots of stories to tell

Many of which show me in a less than ideal light

I didn’t set out to be unpleasant

It just happened that way.

And now when my past is immutable

I’m stuck with who I was

But even at this age i don’t know

Who I will be.

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Writing Like a Lawyer

When I decided to become a lawyer

After decades of scoffing

At bourgeois stuffy boring men

In suits with briefcases

Like my father

I enrolled in law school, conveniently just

Down the road.

My first class was Legal Writing because

You know

You have to write to be a lawyer and

Lawyers have their own bourgeois stuffy boring language

I thought.

So for my first assignment

I wrote fluently, cascades of fancy words

Whereas accordingly insofar ascertainable approbation and so much more

Wrapped around a meaningless core, all these Latinate

Phrases

I was proud as a peacock.

I had written like a lawyer

Like my father.

When the professor returned my assignment with comments and corrections

She wrote in red

On the top of page one

This is gibberish.

So that is how I learned

The hard way

To write like a lawyer.

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Rule #2

All widowers are permitted

After a respectful period of mourning

To fall in love again

And be happy.

Except for Karl

When I die he can choose to

Immolate himself in utter despair

Or become a monk.

Those are reasonable options, no?

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Rule #1

These people are entitled to talk about me when I am dead:

My children

To their respective psychiatrists

That’s it.

Anyone else can think about me

Or plant a tree in my memory

On an as-needed basis.

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