local_library Life’s Little Pleasures

by Connie Woodring

Published in Issue No. 280 ~ September, 2020

When the excavators came to fix her water-soaked basement, they bulldozed a trench through the

backyard and destroyed two deep purple lilac bushes of longstanding. A hardy wind storm blew down

the 90-year-old hickory tree and demolished the newly-planted white lilac bush.

She remembers the last day she wore her high heel black suede pumps. She was at a restaurant.

The electricity went out because someone accidentally came in contact with a utility pole.

The chef improvised.

While waiting for her veal marsala, she felt and heard a crack in her right foot.

She never wore high heels after that.


She no longer reads The New York Times every Sunday. Too pricey for a woman on Social Security.


Due to food allergies and restrictions, she’s said a teary goodbye to Nachos Grande as well as a spinach salad with hard-boiled egg, crisp bacon, and bleu cheese dressing.

Ditto for corn on the cob, feta cheese omelets, pecan pie, fried onions, and everything else fried.


Lower back pain rendered her useless on the tennis and volleyball court 40 years ago.


She’s let the oak tree get out of control. It blocks out the sun.

No more bachelor buttons, daylilies, Japanese iris, or lotus in the koi pond.

No more koi because the herons and raccoons ate them all.


She is suffering from Alzheimer’s. Loss of memory. Memory—ashes of life’s little pleasures.




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I am a 75-year-old retired therapist and social activist who is getting back to my true love of writing after 45 years in my real job.I have had 28 poems published in various presses, including one nominated for the 2017 Pushcart Prize.