#42 Long Ago by Sarah Sarai

and not yet wanting to be Catholic
            I took your grandmother to Mass
Palm Sunday   Easter   An adobe church
probably   I most remember her
shrunk in the way of old women   A fit-in-
the-pocket bundle of
skin softened in time and a black veil
You have good manners
she whispered   We were kneeling on hard
wood   They’ll take you far 
Point of fact I didn’t get far but somewhere
I arrived somewhere
When my sister gave me Story of a Soul by
Therese of Lisieux she wrote
For Sarah   Who’s Almost a Catholic
The foolish expect a payoff
unaware there is nothing to anything and
if you are lovely rich
confident assertive sleep well rise early
don’t argue have an iota even of
discipline you stand a chance   My goal?
Not to be Orson Welles calling Rosebud.
All joining is in a galaxy below breastbones
Was the glinting Rio Grande
wild in your grandmother’s girlhood?
I’d spy it carving itssliver
through the valley   tall cottonwoods
rooted on the river’s banks

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