English poetry

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Reading the Obituaries

Now the Barbaras have begun to die,
Trailing their older sisters to the grave,
The Helens, Margies, Nans-who said goodbye
Just days ago, it seems, taking their leave
A step or two behind the hooded girls
Who bloomed and withered with the century-
The Dorotheas, Eleanors and Pearls
Now swaying on the edge of memory.
Soon, soon, the scythe will sweep for Jeanne
And Angela, Patricia and Diane-
Pause, and return for Karen and Christine
While Susan spends a sleepless night again.
Ah, Debra, how can you be growing old?
Jennifer, Michelle, your hands are cold.

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Poem Reading the Obituaries - Marilyn L Taylor