She didn’t know her intimate old
never saw fingers twisting to stone.
Small impatient tight-strung
snapped at us like our terrier pup.
Now she, our intimate old
queen of fig trees and crochet hooks
reminds each of us, grown slightly gray
of lapses in our family love.
Needles click faster, sharper her tongue
playing out a hand she says lacked trumps
with an unchanging rule:
thicker than water the blood of her kin.
Her eyes blur, hearing aid shrills,
on weak days she pleads for the Angel to come
but life gives her the old anger.
She whips up tea cakes for her kin.