by Dylan Kyung-Lim
Now she really only gets back
To see her parents around Thanksgiving.
And the new dogs are nice,
One has a curly­q tail that she likes,
But they will never be Bo and Vera,
And really the new dogs have been old dogs
For a while now,
Greying and droopy and farty.
Now she sleeps in the guest room, and in the morning
Gets ready to go to her uncle’s
With her parents to meet the rest of the family
For a potluck supper
Where she will probably hide in the bathroom
With the faucet pshhhing into the sink
Staring at herself in the mirror
Remembering when she would
Storm back to her room
After fighting with her parents
And watch herself cry in the mirror
In a self­pitying but also curious
And maybe excited hollywoodland way ­­ the glamour
of sadness, the glossy tear streaks down her face.
But right now she is stepping into the kitchen
Where she sees her father stoop and bend
Because one of the dogs has had an accident
On the tiled floor
And he looks up, chuckles, and says to her
They’re not as young as they used to be.

Dylan Kyung-Lim thinks the pronunciation of “aunt” should rhyme with “vermont” not with “ulysses s grant,” but also doesn’t want to be too dogmatic or aggressive about it.

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