We Sold Their Lives Today


We sold their lives today.

Sixty years of collecting,

lying there like so much rubbish,

just waiting for someone to make an offer.

Selling memories is heartbreaking business.

First it was two for a dollar,

then six for a quarter,

and finally,

ten for a penny.

I waded through

too many

salvaged coffee cans, flower pots, and garden tools.

Shame on you, Grampa.

We all thought Gramma was the pack-rat.

Everything is half off.

I watched her struggle to maintain composure

when the offers were low;

she wanted to hold on to that tiller-

the one he used for so many years.

I wanted to scream “NO!” for her

when she sighed consent

and hung her head,

too weary and old to

argue again.

So many times she heard it-

“Do you want to keep this?”

“Take it,”

was always her reply.

What she meant was,

“Take it, because I have to

know my memories are being held

onto by those I love.”

We hauled them away by carloads, their belongings.

Some were worth much;

others just worth the idea,

“This was Grampa’s.”

or

“This was Grandma’s.”

Now they’ve become our memories.

Memories of the time when

we couldn’t

make time wait,

and our hands were useless to

stop life.

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Filed under Family, Life, Love, Uncategorized

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