the worst disease

is not contagious

yet we all have it

don’t ask a person’s age

without risking rebuke

the stage of the disease

is hidden in dyed hair and

botoxed brows

grayed and wrinkled folks

have the worst cases

or so most think

if you live long enough

you spend much energy

trying to escape the inescapable

in a culture that denies this disease

and belittles those who suffer from it

or worse yet

ignore them completely

pretending not to have it seems

like survival itself

marching time

could be better celebrated

than by pretending

to stay still




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