“The Days of Our Lives” by Wayne F. Burke


Grandma watches As the World Turns
as Gramp strolls through the living
room; his black garters hold up black
socks, white t-shirt, golfer's hat at
a rakish angle; he stops in the doorway,
looks in, says "all that damn woman does
is watch television," and turns away,
jingling loose change in the pocket of
his Bermuda shorts. Gramp liked best to
be outside; had spent forty years cooped
inside a bar; he took me, my brother Mitch,
plus Uncle albert, fly fishing on the
Deerfield River: Mitch cast a caught a
whopper--Uncle Albert, by the shoulder.
Gramp walked into the stream, hip-high
wading boots on, fell and went under.
End of trip. Later, I went up the notch
brook with rod and reeled in a ten inch
rainbow trout and brought it home to
Grandma who cleaned and cooked it while
Uncle Albert stared at me like he hated
my guts, which he did: mine and his own,
and others... Resentful, bitter, too late
he was for things his sister and brother
got, like attention; he was the rotten
baby of his family, his talents, like
himself, ignored; his face become sepulchral.