Winter 1991 • Vol. XIII No. 1 Poetry |

Men

The summer I was ten my mother fell in love with Elvis.I watched her swoon into the TV setmoaning Love Me Tender to the screen, my father's supper burning on the stove.One morning she combed the cotton from her hair, packed a canvas bag and took the train to Memphis. When she came back I asked where Elvis was and she cried for days. Men! I remember her saying years later, me sixteen and brokenhearted by a boy across the tracks whose name I never knew.Morning until dusk I walked the brooding rails. Through June and through July and into August until summer loaded up and leftthe way a yard sale closes down at dark, the racks of faded dresses hauled back in. We both survived. That boy moved away to Kansasand the county covered up the tracks with pitch and tar. Father took Mother back and never mentioned Elvis. And Mother never burned his food againnor sang. 

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