All She Ever Wanted
Was the light of astonishment—
watching a white narcissus bulb
secured in a pot on her old pine desk.
It bloomed like Venus rising from the sea
in front of the morning sun-filled window.
Moment to moment, she monitored
the re-birth of beauty with her every breath,
transfixed in her bones as the flower unfurled
in the mystical grace of that radiant moment.
Final Report Card
Lying at ease in a pine box
I struggled to hear everything
that was being said about me.
Those who knew me best—
sobbed hysterically, and
could barely speak coherently.
The only moment of levity
was when it was reported
that a grandson once asked
me what I do at work all day.
As a therapist, I probably said:
I try to make people happy.
He replied: What do you do,
tickle people all day?
I laughed my way into the world beyond.
Milton P. Ehrlich Ph.D. is an 88-year-old psychologist and a veteran of the Korean War. He has published poems in The Antigonish Review, London Grip, Arc Poetry Magazine, Descant Literary Magazine, Wisconsin Review, Red Wheelbarrow, Christian Science Monitor, and The New York Times.