May, 2021

Last Times

When was the last time– 

I had a malted milk?

I used to love them as a child–why did I stop?

Or a hot fudge sundae with lots of sauce?

Too many calories–or was I too cheap to buy?

The last time–

I told the kids or anyone that I loved them?

It’s sad that I can’t remember.

 Or made love with a full and passionate heart?

That, I will always remember.

The last time–

 I spoke with a friend,

To joke and remember times past?

When we shared beers and tales,

After the last ball was struck.

The last time–

I had a good rare steak with fries?

I should have ordered ribeye and not the sirloin.

And real Peking duck?

Oh–back in Beijing, so long ago.

The last time–

That I’ll take a breath—

 And have the last of a lifetime of heart beats?

The when and how is a question mark,

The present is still here to live in.

4 thoughts on “May, 2021

  1. Hello Yi,                                                                                                                                        July 18, 2021 I loved hearing from you!  I can’t seem to locate where I filed your last letter–so I’m very, very late in responding–but I think about it and you every day–makes me smile to remember how happy it made me feel to go to your class. There is lots of news to report–none of it very promising.    But it’s kind of interesting–just no one to talk it over with. The Shut-down has really been effective for me.  I don’t know anyone in Missoula anymore and I don’t have a car.  I think my car is still somewhere in Hawaii. I wasn’t prepared for the Red state political situation I found.  As you may recall,Missoula has always been a Democrat bastion–back in the Sixties, all the hippies and peaceniks congregated here.  I think I wrote about how some of my Rodeo Club buddies roped a peacenik with long hair and shaved his head when he stopped to visit (and speak) at Bozeman.  It made national news, and the Dean admonished the fellows. but there was no expelling from school.  These days, I think they might just have shot the hippie–except that all the guys now have long hair. my brother had become an avid Republican.  When he learned I was not, he simply announced we wouldn’t talk about it–and we didn’t.  He announce that Dad was a Republican all his life.  I didn’t tell him that wasn’t true–Dad and I often discussed politics. In 1992, when my mother, brother,  and Dad drove to the polling place together they cancelled out all three votes:  Mother voted for Barbara Bush,  Dee voted for Perot, and Dad voted for Clinton.  Dad told me he just couldn’t go for all the rich guys giving money to all the rich guys.   When my brother changed into a nice guy he changed his habit of always doing the opposite of what Dad  did.  I just wish I’d experienced it The new Republican governor got caught coming off of National Forest land with a wolf he’d just shot.  Wolves have been protected since the Endangered Species Act went into effect.  The governor immediately got the red congress to pass a bill making it legal to shoot wolves.  It’s also now legal in Montana to carry concealed weapons (including assault rifles)  anywhere–schools, etc.  The universities are trying to get excluded–but I don’t know where that will go.  I didn’t think a Federal law could be overridden by a state one. My brother died in late October, and his widow just held a Remembrance Day on June 19. I took a bus over to Billings and a friend ferried me on up to the ranch (between GrassRange and Lewistown).  The ranch was soooo beautiful!  I’d been talking with my brother quite a bit–but his death came as a shock. He’s four years older than I am. (“Jerome”) His actual name is Dee.  In talking with him, he seemed like a totally different person.  And whenever I spoke with him and later, his widow whom I’d never met, he sounded like such a nice guy.   She was his 5th wife. His behavior wasn’t what I remembered, but a large crowd came (200+ people).  Lots of people talked about what a great guy he was, and I became really regretful that I hadn’t been in touch for 20 Years!  None of his thee children came to the Remembrance. The ranch manager asked me to ride out to help gather some cattle the next day.  I borrowed a horse and saddle and it was a glorious experience. The first heat wave started that day and I didn’t even think about sunburn–but my arms and face are still peeling.  After we returned to the ranch, I couldn’t get off of my horse! And then after two guys unloaded me, I could’t walk.  Still not doing well in the walking department,  I should go out and ride every day to build those muscles back up. Ranchers are really worried.  Although it’s green and beautiful, the grass and alfalfa won’t be tall enough to cut or feed the cattle through winter.  Everyone is trying to buy hay now because the price will go through the roof.  Colorado is the place to go–I talked to a friend down near Boulder who said his grass and hay is five feet tall! It’s been over 100 years since they have had so much rain there.  My dad would be going crazy right now. Of all the people at the Remembrance, I may have been the only Democrat.  Mainly they were unloading on the Global Warning beliefs.  I kept my mouth shut–but I don’t think I can live here any more!  Missoula is a really small place–but Montana gets another representative as a result of the 2020 population/vote count  Maybe that will even things out a bit. How are you feeling?  I know your mind is still ultra sharp Your writing is so wonderful!   You wrote about covid problems before the Republican anti-vac feelings hit.  Hope all is well and you’re happy. I’m going to sign off now, but I have more to tell you about getting slammed by scammers/hackers.  That’s if I don’t go crazy before then. It feels so good to be in touch with you. All my best, Sharon


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