When I put her out, once, by the garbage pail, She looked so limp and bedraggled, So foolish and trusting, like a sick poodle, Or a wizened aster in late September, I brought her back in again For a new routine-- Vitamins, water, and whatever Sustenance seemed sensible At the time: she'd lived So long on gin, bobbie pins, half-smoked cigars, dead beer, Her shriveled petals falling On the faded carpet, the stale Steak grease stuck to her fuzzy leaves. (Dried-out, she creaked like a tulip.) The things she endured!-- The dumb dames shrieking half the night Or the two of us, alone, both seedy, Me breathing booze at her, She leaning out of her pot toward the window.
Near the end, she seemed almost to hear me-- And that was scary-- So when that snuffling cretin of a maid Threw her, pot and all, into the trash-can, I said nothing.
But I sacked the presumptuous hag the next week, I was that lonely.