Was it the bad company, bad whiskey or bad habits and political excitement? Brain fever, congestion, or the Death of your sons in the war? Did you fall apart, disappointed in love, dog bitten or bitter, was it egotism, rheumatism, or a fall from a horse? Feebleness, jealousy or some other female disease? Was it the fire in the the farmhouse, the lost cat, your hysteria after his desertion and you with the 6 kids simmering on the outskirts of town? Was it uterine derangement, venereal excess greediness or Grief? What superstition, what time of life, what stroke of insight brought you through those tall oak doors hard slamming behind you, locked up for good with you and your domestic afflictions, your cardboard suitcase, and your deranged masturbations.
Woman Troubles. What troubled you, woman? Auntie Cora who received no honorable mention at the family table. Only murmers and downward glances. Forks and knives placed carefully on the edges of our chipped china plates til polite conversation resumed and your name, sealed in linen napkins on our laps, was simply rinsed out in the next day’s wash. Hung to dry. Carried away on intemperate winds.
BLR April 2015