Come on baby let’s do the twist! Maybe I’ll be in my, you guessed it, my teenie, weenie yellow polka dot bikini!

 

What were your favorites when you were either a 13-year old girl or a 14-year old  boy? And is it still, dear Reader? (Thanks for the idea, Mr. Stevens-Davidowitz of the NYT.)

As kids, what power do we have? A 420 character, 9 line memoir bit.

 

As a kid, I knew I couldn’t turn the tide of Mama’s rage,

but I remember cowering off to the side

& trying to figure if I could lower the pitch & heat of it,

as if I were on the periphery of a fire,

angling to stay safe while hoping to douse it.

My next-younger sister got most of Mama’s

belting,hitting, slapping, & pinching.

We shared a bedroom, an island in the awful,

& when she left home, this sister became famous.

PATTY

 

Out of sight,out of mind: another 420 character, 9-line memoir bit

 

Vigilant as she was,

once we were out of the house, either on a daily basis

as in “going to the library, Mama,”

code for meeting Marty Lyons to kiss in the stacks or in college

or married & out of state, we dropped from her radar.

My dear younger sister escaped Mama’s abuse

by carting all her percussion instruments & stands to the huge garage attic,

out of sight & harm’s way,

except for the Coca-Cola and cigarettes.

PATTY