Beauty is the Least

The old woman’s eyes widen in excitement when her family enters.
The room is of a dull white color, a sheet divides it in two.

The feeble woman casts a quick smile and then reels it back in.
She is embarrassed of her missing dentures and her grey hair.

She pulls her blanket closer, to hide her ailing body.
She runs her fingers slowly through her thin grey hair.

After adjusting herself, she looks up at her family.
She begins to speak of small things; never of herself.

Now, the little energy she had, extinguished – she only listens.
She occasionally laughs softly as she battles sleep.

Her family attempts nothing fantastic or unordinary,
They only wish to be there with her as much as they can.

The nurse comes to attach the sleeping woman to a few machines.
She leaves quickly, jotting notes and numbers onto a tablet.

The old woman breaths laboriously; sleep has beaten her.
Her family silently leaves the room after kissing her forehead.

When the old woman wakes it takes her a minute to stop dreaming,
She remembers the tubes that are invading her body.

She longs again for her family,
For her husband who cannot visit.

She longs for her health,
Her memories and her mind.

Of all things she longs for in her age,
Beauty is longed for the least.

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