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Mia, 50, graceful and holding                   


A crooked gait hesitant with poise

a metal stick as accompaniment

so thin she can be tumbled with the leaves,

her smiling effort pushes through fear

and pain so familiar it needs no name

a hungry disease infests her body

from an unknown river of pathogens,

she knows no fault, knows she’s

too young but no longer

how many years she has,

the world moves in and out

of awareness, names gone

then a face flashes with recall,

grinning she uses their name

to celebrate that momentary spark,

the gentle hand of her lover

a gentle consort

on her yielding journey

to an unknown horizon



© Sharon Lopez Mooney, “Mia, 50, graceful and holding”, originally published in Brown Bag LLC, ed. Benji Knight,  Knoxville, TN 2023

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