Bathing Beauty

At eighty-one she lived alone
and stayed up late to watch old movies on tv.

Occasionally, after looking out her window,
she would leave voicemail for her children
asking simply
if they happened to be looking at the moon.

But here is a girlish note — in curling cursive letters.
It is on the back of a stark photograph
of her when she was twenty,
all eyes and lips and gorgeous hair
and striking in a one-piece bathing suit:

Do you see how chubby I have gotten?
What do you think of me like this?
I don’t know why this photo turned out as it did;
I only know that whenever someone takes my picture,
I think of you and miss you terribly.

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