She fancies herself an heiress,
a horsy sort with closets full
of Harris tweeds and skeletons,
sensible shoes, nubbly woolen socks.
BBC America is the only thing she cares
to watch, “Local news is so absurd!”
Names her cat Miss Marple, and each day
at four o’clock, they share scones and tea.
Never mentions any kind of family,
that crusty bunch in Pittsburgh
to whom she feigns an accent
when they call, she keeps it short.
They can have their coal and steel,
she writes poetry now about a cottage
where she didn’t live, a schoolyard
near a church she’s never seen.
Having recently learned to tat, each knot
starves a memory while cinching
in its place a lovely bit of fantasy,
shoring up a lacy fine facade.
An unsophisticated visitor might think
she’s UK born, not Pennsylvania poor,
a dainty London bloom transplanted,
widowed in a walk-up far from home.
Her obituary written, it hangs beside
the ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ instructions
at her door. Then she’ll be as she wanted:
someone else, and something more.