Old Wives Tales

This is a poem that I wrote in a rush and have been thinking about how to revise. I think there’s a poem beneath the poem that I’m hoping to uncover.

Old Wives’ Tales

If you find a snake curled

in the very bottom of your

drinking well, and if legend

is right which legend always

is, then you will be dead within

one year. If you break a mirror

when it’s showing the reflection

of the man you love, and if your

mother is right which your mother

always is, then your lover will be

dead within a week. If you have

already bought your wedding

gown, white and silk and lace,

then you should return it now. You

should ask for your money back, no,

you should ask for the years back

that you will lose in grief. And it

will be years. One morning you will

wake up and find that your hair is

gray streaked and your fingers hurt

when you clasp your hands together

for too long, in prayer, in pain. If

you still collapse at the grave of your

love, and if the doctors are right and

the doctors are always right, then you

will be medicated within one day.

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2 Comments

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2 responses to “Old Wives Tales

  1. A very original structure and theme to this clever piece. Nice work.

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