Once bills had cellophane windows
with wallpaper inside
like a house you could peek into.
Now most are nursing-shoe white
with open-toes so you can touch
the address beneath.  Once I slid
checks between my fingers
like bookmarks, each month a chapter.
Now I dial the teleteller,
who elocutes superbly for a machine,
but too rapidly for me to mark
my register accurately.

In balancing, I do the math by hand
because I heard arithmetic and crosswords
can forestall Alzheimer's, just as skill
in composition renders it unlikely,
a fact deduced from a hundred nuns' brains
when matched against their autobiographies
from fifty years before - though it seems obvious
the more you have, the more you can spare--
but science is rarely obvious.



If you've any comments on his poem, C.E.Chaffin would be pleased to hear from you.