in the middle of our lives
most do not ask the old-man question:
why have I lived so long?

And few desire
his narrow answer:
a little cabbage, less beer.

Most prefer the wicked–
the woman who smoked
since seven

the broad who drank
herself to death
and still plays a prank

or two.

Lois Marie Harrod’s 16th collection, Nightmares of the Minor Poet appeared in June. Fragments from the Biography of Nemesis and How Marlene Mae Longs for Truth, in 2013. Widely published in journals and online, she teaches Creative Writing at TCNJ. Visit her website