Their names are screwed tight
to the Resident's Directory
hanging visible by the door
opening one way ~ no escape.
He dresses up proper to read the news
one more time. Changing chairs makes
the old news new.
Elsie ran away to be a bride before
his father could interrupt love.
A work tent by the rail road's
newly laid track ~ her nuptial bed.
Jesus loves me is the only song
she remembers. She sings it heartfelt,
over and over, now that she isn't a child.
We come to see our mother who doesn't
know we came. When her limp hands wake
to clasp back tender, our smiles tremble.
Wedding bands worn thin