Why Judy Won’t Go to Bed
Judy talks to no one.
For four years, she’s sat in her chair watching TV.
She refuses all medication, all assessments and interventions.
Her sister thinks she speaks with demons.
Maybe they’re her only friends, the only ones she can trust.
Maybe this is the best she can do.
Her sister tells me that Judy got to this point because
her drug-addicted ex-husband whored her out for years
so he’d always have enough cash for his meth.
Life in a chair watching TV isn’t much of a life
but it’s better than what she had before.
Maybe this is the best she can do. Probably.
Glowing with elliptical light,
a being leaves the air,
enters your hallway
like a cold draft
in the middle of the night
I took this from nothing
and hands you the surprise
of your own skull still singing.
Richard King Perkins II is a state-sponsored advocate for residents in long-term care facilities. He lives in Crystal Lake, IL, USA with his wife, Vickie and daughter, Sage. He is a three-time Pushcart nominee and a Best of the Net nominee whose work has appeared in more than a thousand publications.