When I was the age my daughter is now
I saw Mom put on makeup in her bathroom
and blurted, “At least you didn’t have cancer.”
“But I did,” she said.
But she couldn’t have
because even then, I knew,
I knew cancer killed people.
So how could she be standing there in her bra
with the squishy thingies where her breasts used to be
like cancer was the flu?
The next year Dad got cancer, and he didn’t die.
Mom got cancer again, and she didn’t die (again).
But Cile did. And Llera. And Fannie.
Abbey didn’t die of cancer. Neither did Fayma or Dixie.
Vanita didn’t either, but Mark did. And Don.
Best to get dressed anyway
Fix your wig