the end is near
she maintained communication
by way of phone
sometimes she would write letters,
but she was best at the phone.
there were times she’d stop calling
and it seemed as if she disappeared,
but she never did
she was always there.
and then one day all the letters
and all the calls stopped,
all her bills were paid through the next month,
she was always good at that
always ahead of the game
she never gave anyone a reason to
come looking for her,
but when the letters and the calls stopped
that’s when they went looking for her.
when they got to her house
the grass looked like a jungle
the mailbox was stuffed full of letters
all the curtains were pulled closed
and the front door was locked
but they found the key
inside a rusted out bucket.
when they went inside
they turned on the lights
the electricity worked
and the house was mostly clean
there were unopened medication bottles
neatly lined on kitchen countertops
the bills organized and stacked
checks undelivered addressed and signed
the calendar was stuck on last month
and the phone was off the hook.
when they reached the living room
that’s where they found her
sitting in her favorite rocking chair
facing a broken glass tv screen
containing four words written in dust:
“the end is near”
About the Author: Tohm Bakelas is a social worker in a psychiatric hospital. He was born in New Jersey, resides there, and will die there. His poems have appeared in numerous journals, zines, and online publications. He has published 13 chapbooks. He runs Between Shadows Press.
Image Credit: The Library of Congress: ” Historic American Buildings Survey, Stanley P. Mixon, Photographer, March 28, 1940 INTERIOR DETAIL, MIDDLE ROOM, MANTEL AND DOORS, WEST SIDE, FIRST FLOOR, OLD HOUSE. – Samuel Phillips House, Tower Hill Road (U.S. Route 1), Belleville, Washington County, RI”