You open the bedroom curtain
and it’s hallelujah outside.
The ordinary patio gold-leaved,
the cottonwood trees lit from within.
For a moment you can
withstand the splendor,
accept the hallowed ground,
believe in the glory of endings.
Each morning I mourn my reflection
by asking a metaphysical question:
Who is this woman watching me wash
a crumpled face and brush ragged teeth?
Why do I wonder whether I am seeing
a doppelganger goose or a transgander?
Here’s the Siri-us hitch: I ask my reflection
a question and I’m replied by a virtual bitch.
“Your face would turn a thousand ships the other direction,”
she observes with bemused affection.
Some days I’m glad for our mourning conversation,
when the image of a disheveled septuagenarian
gives me a special dispensation with a yawn,
“You will miss me when I’m gone.”
Nancy Harris McLelland taught creative writing, composition, and literature for over twenty years and Conducted writing workshops for the Western Folklife Center, Great Basin College , and the Great Basin Writing Project . An Elko County native with a background in ranching. McLelland has presented her "Poems from Tuscarora" Both at daytime and evening events at the Cowboy Poetry Gathering in Elko. Her essay, "Border Lands: Cowboy Poetry and the Literary Canon" is in the anthology Cowboy Poetry Matters .