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The Senior Center

The Senior Center was a beehive of active waiting
to die.

Bingo
but not ballroom dancing.

Knitting
but not garden expansions.

Physical therapy
but not yoga
and not chi gong,
much less mindful meditations
sung in four part harmony.

The new guy,
just growing into sixty-five,
asked them
How would we like to be remembered
one hundred years from now?

That doesn’t seem likely,
I know,
but perhaps more likely together
than playing Solitaire
side by side.

I would like to be remembered
as healers of The River
said a somber SeptemberGenerian woman
surrounded by ancient lady friends.

No one needed to ask why.
We all knew
what was coming downriver
for future regenerations
of thirsty toxined minds
with biodiverse bodies.

And so we found younger allies
who owned property along The River,
beginning with the railroad company,
and the Mohegans
and the Pequots,
where a Senior knew a Senior
with a well-placed daughter,
and sometimes a son
of unusual cooperative and long-term focus.

Together we planted firs
and cedars along polluted and denuded banks,
for future generations to manage,
harvest for housing
and furniture
and fiber
and possibly even coffins
waiting for memories of polluted rivers
to die.

That was one hundred years ago
we started
in this regenerative Senior Center,
and still going strong
as each year
a new incoming class
of those who finally reached sixty-five
joined our river healing project,
more recently also producing fruit trees
and berries,
flax
and hemp,
mushrooms
and nuts
and sweetgrass baskets
woven by SeptemberGenerians.

Women and a few surviving men
and some more in-between
smiling together
at the round cedar table in the back,
remembering Elder healers
of our barren land
and naked River.

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2 thoughts on “The Senior Center

  1. Janet Tanner says:

    Beautiful. I love it. I’m going to print and post this to the memory tree at my mother-in-law’s assisted living home. Thank you, Janet

    Like

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