The Daily Parker

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Poem: Just another

Just another
tell myself every time.
Only a couple familiar Hebrew prayers
are somewhat faintly comforting.
Shivas are real disturbing
with their covered mirrors,
louds voices
over plates of food
and crashing dishes.

And on the other side
for my Italian relatives
& world beyond;
the many wakes.
But usually
they're these perfect strangers to me;
going only to show respect.

So I was surprised
to see how much this man I never met -
Looked like his brother
my Italian grandfather,
I never really knew.
Too young
for that funeral back in '75.

Just another.
Mom throws her pocket book down,
almost missing me.
And my Nonnie says, "Ouf! What's she got in there?"

Sitting quietly,
hope I won't have to say too much.
'Cause what can you really say?

Outside mostly men smoke Marlboros
from the hard boxes,
and drink coffee from Dunkin' Donuts.
Corrine then Lorraine (my cousins)
reassure me with their knowing looks
as we walk the steps out.

30 June 1997, Winthrop, Mass.

Copyright ©1997 Dena Barisano

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