SENTINEL POETRY #16          MARCH 2004          ISSN 1479-425X

GLORIA G. MURRAY


IF I LIVED ALONE

I'd have to get one of those Med Alert tags
in case I should fall and it could be days
before I'd be found by some scout selling cookies
or a Jehovah Witness in search
of someone to save

If I swallowed a pill the wrong way
there would be no one to do CPR
if a bee flew in the window, no one to swat it
if the garbage was too heavy, no one to lift it
the missing sock would always be mine
if I forgot a towel in the shower
no one to get it

I wouldn't eat anything canned
shampoo and detergent would last for years
I'd buy soup for one, three bananas
the 4-pack English muffins, the quart size milk
--I'd learn to think small--

I'd have to get a pet
to have something to come home to
but then who would care for it
when I was out too long?
I'd have plants with names

I'd have to always eat alone
leave the TV on all night for company
the phone would always be for me
the clocks would tick only for me

I wouldn't eat
I wouldn't sleep
I'd be dead in a week

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