The Seventy-Second Virgin
It's hard not to think about that last one,
the very last virgin, helping all her
friends with their make-up, their hair, having fun
almost, almost forgetting this martyr's
paradise is a virgin's nightmare. She
would wish each well, walk them to the door
where they'd hug, weeping. Then she'd say, "Write me,"
like a mother until there were no more.
When Seventy-One had gone she would flop
on a couch, thumb through an old magazine
with the crossword done and wish she'd brought
a good book, a romance, or her sewing.
And she would wish someone were there to say,
"Write me," someone to say, "It will be okay."
Michael Riedell lives with his wife in Northern California. He is the author of The Way of Water (Slow Mountain Press, 2014). A writer of poems, plays, and songs, Michael has noticed that since his dog died recently he sings with a little more twang.