He saw a lady in the park
Smoking a cigarette.
She coughed then looked
At him and said
“What day is it
I forget?”

“it’s Saturday today,”
He said,
“Surely that is plain?”
She answered,
“What was that you said?”
And then she coughed again.

She sat quite bent
Upon the seat.
The smoke wreathed
Her grey head.
“You see there is no
School today,”
He softly said.

“Life’s a school, my child!”
She cried,
Banging down her heel.
The most important part
Of it is learning not
To feel.”

“But I disagree,”
He answered,
Breathing in fresh air.
“The most important
Part of it,
Is learning how to care.”

She narrowed shut her
Ancient eyes,
Ground out her cigarette.
“That’s true of course,
My child, she said…
“It’s just that I forget.”


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