September 23rd by Merrell Miles

“How does it feel to be old?”

“It’s horrible.”

My grandpa recently went to Alabama

where he buried his older brother.

Most of his friends have been dead

a while, but a few still call his house.

Then grandpa spends a couple

of weeks talking about how bad off

they are, rehashing the same stories

every time I visit, sometimes twice.

My daddy would say, “You already told

me that.” But I am not my father,

so I force a smile, hoping, for once,

that the glaucoma will hide my

salty cheeks and the terrible face I make

when I cry. He remembers how his

generation is dying like cats to the coyotes.

“But I’m lucky. It happens to everyone. Who

am I to think I’m special?”

As a student of English and Modern Languages, Merrell Miles enjoys writing, reading, and communication. As a child of the Delta, her poetry radiates her blue-collar roots. When she isn’t running with Ro, her Australian Shepherd, Merrell frequently explores Compamento Viejo, Olancho, Honduras.

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