It’s the one mom still knows–
because Alzheimer’s can’t steal it.
She starts &finishes with gusto–
same cadence, same inflection,
same certain laugh. Every time.
About a minute or two after the punch
line, she loops back around with,
“You know our story, don’t you?”
Daddy didn’t like him. Thought
he’d amount to nothing. Mom went
&told the justice of the peace not
to marry us before we came walking in,
but that justice said he couldn’t
legally stop anyone from marrying
if they were of age, and we were,
and that made daddy hotter than hell
Comes knocking on my apartment door
telling your dad there are four ways
out of this town– take any one of them.
But plenty of times I didn’t listen.
How I convinced your Dad was something else.
He got clear out to Colorado before he
turned around, wondering how I dug my claws
into him– “You know that one, don’t you?”