To your health, a poem

To your health

She forgot to send her payment —

a single check to the company

never put in the envelope

hidden under a stack of worthless

receipts, appointment cards, electricity bills.

Everything matters

but this one more, at least today.

And because the check did not arrive,

her policy was canceled.

She who had given up her ovaries

came face to face

in the ring, with illness

and had emerged the winner, now had no bar

to hold onto, no pillows to fall back on

no parachute

no net below.

We two old friends of more than twenty years

sit at a table in a cafe

talking of our lives, our homes,

books we’ve read

people almost forgotten,

purses with zippers

jump ropes

kitchen counters

projects abandoned.

“How’s your health now, Lucy?”

“I’m crossing my fingers,”

she says.

“That’s all I have until they pass that bill.”

Lynne Sachs