Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store

Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store,

I am your cashier.

I scan your cookies, your cakes, your medications;

I make polite conversation, delicately choosing my words

As you delicately chose and scribbled each item

on a wrinkled, sun-bleached notepad.

Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store,

I begin to wonder why you also buy so many cans and ingredients

Rather than prepared soups and maybe some crackers;

There are no holidays around the corner 

And your grandchildren pictured in your floral checkbook wallet 

Are likely miles away.

I think on my own great grandmother

And a week of summer spent in her house throwing away five-years expired

Cans and ingredients.

Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store,

I can't help but ask

Who you are expecting this week.

You shake your head.

Nobody.

Great Grandmother never did either.

Hence the unopened dusty party plates

Hence the tucked back, "best by 2012," expired

Cans and ingredients.

Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store, 

I think on my own mother.

Her children are young adults, teenagers.

In 20 years, she will be you.

20 years, after a lifetime of going to the grocery store

Buying plenty for all six

Plenty of cans and ingredients.

Here things never expire - 

They go too quick.

But Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store,

You used to be her too,

But in 20 years the only thing that changed is now, in addition

I scan your cookies, your cakes, and your medications.

I am your cashier, 

Dear Older Woman in the Grocery Store.

 

This poem is about: 
Me
My family
Poetry Terms Demonstrated: 

Comments

Lillybird17

I actually really like this poem. So many of the poems that I have been seeing for the Life in a Letter Slam have all seemed the same, with too many cliches that are written to abstract concepts. This really tells a story and has enough repetition and figurative language to be concidered a poem, but it is more like a story. After reading a ton of poems adressed to death or to yet another sister (why are their so many???) I really enjoyed reading this poem. The title really grabbed me, and the poem was just long enough to keep my attention without going over board. Please, don't change a thing! Good luck and happy writing!

-Lilly

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