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Her Purse


I threw away her purse today

And inside were bits of me

The purse was old and tattered

Just as she was at the end

Her mind was frayed and worn

Like yarn that had been worried

By fingers picking at each

Memory or worry of her life

The purse was soft and smooth

Just like her skin at the base of her throat

Where we would place our heads

For comfort when we young

And even when we were older

When time or life betrayed us

Reaching far inside into it

Like her heart inside her chest

I found pieces of myself I did not know

She held so close

A picture taken in early teens and

Notes written in shaking hand

The heart of the purse held her

Identity and tissues and memories

Worn and used and not discarded

Bits and pieces of her life

Cherished, guarded, and treasured

Which I didn’t know she loved

And today I threw away her purse

And found pieces of myself

That I didn’t know were there….

jjy 02/02/08

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