And at my new job I am the manager-in-training.
In French it is
“Responsable en formation”
Or as I would say,
However, I was not responsible in gathering my information.
During my interview, I said masseuse.
Turns out that is heavily connotated and maybe even denotated as a *** word.
I asked if it was the French ending
He said, “No, it’s the happy ending”
Maybe French is only **** because of how much is escapes me.
The opposite reason is why death was never **** to me
because of how much I escaped it
Maybe death finds
And Anyway I got the job
And a month later my boss gave to me a T-shirt that said
your table is ready
Instead of a massage table,
I thought it was a stretcher
And I laughed
I wonder what that means
“You could have died” “you almost died” “it’s a miracle you’re still here”
“we’re /glad/ you’re still here”
Are words I often hear from my doctors
who almost always meet with me pro bono because I am poor, but also interesting
But they are not words I hear from my mother
Those are the words she saves to give to her 90-something mother-in-law
I say 90-something not because I am careless or inattentive, but because my grandmother Adeline lied about her age so often in her youth, that both she and the government forgot her actual age
The words my mother gives to grandma J upset her.
She is tired of living
Asked all of us to pray for her death
Asked my brother in law to be “to help her get to heaven tonight”
Said “I know you can help me get to heaven tonight” presumably because he works for the cook county coroner's office.
He is a man so jaded that he sometimes can only laugh on the job when he sees particularly trite Chicago suicide notes:
To be fair, he’s not cruel
It is usually when it is something
“you either die the hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain”
Anyway, it made him cry when old Addie asked that
and also if you are a prayer person,
please pray for her death,
I can’t bring myself to do it.
Originally performed at the iFell Gallery on November 30, 2019. Adeline D Johnson passed peacefully on May 13, 2020. She was buried with her dog’s ashes. She was buried next to her husband she hadn’t seen since 1976