Parking Mimi


We would visit her in the nice trailer park.

Not the one down the way where the road 

curved and my sister flew out the window of the VW Bug and broke her back. Mimi was across from the fancy restaurant, El Nido. More or less.

Like a railyard of the lost, the trailers lined up herringboned on either side of the dirt drive-in area, garden chairs on patches of fetishist, grandmother grass.  Lawn animals, plaster greeters frozen in glee.


Her trailer was white with pale pink trim and a double banging screen door. Up the three steps into her arms then onto the couch with your favorite drink and hand-wrapped fudge with nuts and marshmallows.  Or TV mix, buttery pretzels and salty breakfast cereal. And she a Sidecar or a Highball.


Oh she drank.  Who wouldn't?  Dumped off.  Alone.  Old.  Dead husband. 


She jingled with a full bracelet of silver discs, the names of each grandchild on each full moon of her love, sounded the

celebration of your existence with every adoring move.


I don't remember any small spaces in her trailer. Just room everywhere for me, for my siblings.  A shrine to her sons and their progeny. Her incense: White Shoulders, My Sin and Chanel No.5.


She had been a dancer. In the '20s.  Now her legs were covered in psoriasis and she kept them hidden under hose or trousers.


My sad heart sometimes takes walks down her lane.  I walk into 1971 before she started to grow the cancer.  I ask her to show me how to make those sour cream potatoes.  Then she gives me dancing lessons.


I will never be loved like that again.



Abbie Conant

June 25, 2011