The Shine Journal

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Goodbye by Sue Ellis


I crowd onto the sofa with Mary and the ghosts
and vie for her attention,
but I am, after all, the younger sister--
the pest.

She's got more important things
to think of just now.
Is a part-time job
a reasonable expectation in the next life?

I am careful she doesn't notice
when I make room for one more.
I wouldn't have allowed him in
but for his insistence
and my growing weariness.

I know she'll forgive me
just like the time I told on her
for wearing my new fur-collared coat
and making it smell like cigarettes.


Motivation: The poem is for my sister, Mary, a rascal who bossed me from the time we were small. She came to stay with me just before she died. I couldn't get the last word, even then. I loved her very much.

Bio: Sue Ellis lives and writes near Spokane, Washington. Her short stories, poems, book reviews and essays have appeared in such places as Flashquake, Christian Science Monitor, Wild Violet, The Cynic Online Magazine, and The Internet Review of Books.

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Editor: Pamela Tyree Griffin

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