“Miss Calif. 1944” by L.K. Thayer

"feline with fruit"

she lies there, her mouth gaping open like a baby bird

not wanting to eat but waiting to grasp death

her body heaves every morsel of sustenance up

she is aching to leave the nowness

she is a ghost of herself

a white corpse that they keep plugged in

sucking up her insurance

stuck in a barbed wire nest

the baby bird wants to fly to heaven

she is in between, no strength to scream

no more words, no more coffee, no more cigarettes

no more television or snickers bars,

she just wants ginger ale.

Shadow, Shadow, Shadow, she cries for her cat

misses him more than her dead husband

let her go. Why can’t they just let her go?

I kiss her forehead. she says my skin is soft,

I say so is hers. I tell her it’s alright to go now.

no more beauty pageants, no more titles, coke

or Frank Sinatra, no more bowling trophies

or casting calls, no more rejection. let her go

her life hurts of emptiness, she can’t swallow it any more

Blanche Dubois without the streetcar and no desire

on her lips, let her go…

she’s been there and done this and that,

smoked crack, she doesn’t want her life back,

take her off life support, she is coming up short,

if I could assist her suicide I would,

have mercy on her, we do it for animals,

but we let people suffer,

how cruel to let her lie in her waste and wallow.

It kills me to see her wither. Her voice once so deep

barely a whisper, now only a skeleton of her former self

my BFF, my darling neighbor, Miss CA. 1944.

no more tiaras, no more crowns, no more L.A. Times

off with her head, let the red queen go,

gently into that good night, please,

tuck her in

she has written her last poem…

her last rhyme

Shadow, Shadow, Shadow

it’s dinner time

(“Shadow & the apple” photo by L.K. Thayer)

© 2012


  1. Alexis Rhone Fancher · October 26, 2012

    Extraordinary. Simply extraoridnary.

  2. Mitch · October 26, 2012

    Your love and kindness will be forever a companion on her last journey. There are tears in every word you write Lisa.
    Shed your tears on that last breath but be happy as the last chapter ends… for the book will live on and on…

    • lkthayer · October 27, 2012

      Thank you darling Mitch for your healing words…

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