Life is Good   
Renee Galloway


Forty years ago, eight and energetic

Skinny blonde with innocent eyes and a crooked smile

Simple toys like mops and rocks

Locksley’s my favorite playmate, she was rich with Barbies and no need for mops

Lawrence Welk and the beautiful dancers, Sissy and Bobby mesmerized me so

Mawmaw and Pawpaw’s tiny white house with the Naugahyde couch

Where’s that pesky brother? Playing in the woods no doubt.

Vietnam, Kennedy assassinated, hippies, peace man, groovy, Goldie Hawn and Laugh-In


Thirty years ago, eighteen years of age, not quite my prime

Skinny girl with “Frost and Tip” streaks and a quiet mouth now straightened out

Cruising McDonalds, looking for the boys, and working at Ruby Falls

Mickie was my best friend forever and closest confidante

American Bandstand showed us the latest moves, rating songs by the way we groove

Hanging out by the crisp, intoxicating lake; never could get up on one ski

My brother is late getting home . . . always at his girlfriend’s house

Watergate, Roots, Walk this way, Good night, John-boy and May the force be with you


Twenty long years ago, married and twenty-eight

Not so skinny after two babies and Mama says I look tired; bleached blonde hair, what a mistake

Money  good, although we could always use more

Too far away from my closest friends

 Spiritual life awakens, I fervently pray

Giddy Golden Girls and disorderly military functions

Too far away from my closest friends

Little brother married, what’s so great about Texas . . . wish I could see him

Who shot J.R., Just say No, Thriller, CDs and The Wall finally falls


Ten years ago, I was pushing fantastic forty at thirty-eight

Not so slender, toned-down hair with highlights not bleach

Three precious kids and working part-time consume me

Military activities, now a little more formal, but lots of good friends here in Japan

CNN and the delayed taping of Today keep us in touch with home

Money is good; just so much to buy

Brother, where art thou? How did we get so far?

Doc Martens, political correctness, cell phones, Gulf War, Columbine


Today I’m forty-eight, nearer to fifty than anything else

Brown hair with professional streaks

New lines on my face everyday, but I can’t see them if I don’t look

Who cares anyway?  My eyes are going bad.

School, work, school . . . only see him on the weekends now

Money goes as fast as it comes

Empty nest . . . that’s when life begins they say

Television, who has the time?  Pray, pray, pray.

Last week my brother called from his home far, far away

September 11, duct tape, Y2K, going green, I-Pods, Emo, Google, Virginia Tech