Southern Cultures 12.2 (2006) 18-19
[Access article in PDF]
My Aunt Smokes Another Lucky
Click for larger view
| Figure 1 |
"She smokes her way through another story, punctuates it with the Lucky. . ." Courtesy of the Library of Congress.
She slips it out of its leatherette case,
an immaculate cartridge
she clenches between the red bow of her lips
while flicking her butane lighter,
sucking deeply until the tip
starts to crackle and glow like a fuse.
She snaps the lighter shut and blows smoke
through pursed lips over her shoulder,
lifting the Lucky between two rednail fingers
like somebody about to take an oath,
her hand's glamorous gesture
echoing the pale curve of her cheek.
She smokes her way through another story,
punctuates it with the Lucky
she keeps sharp with crisp drags and raps
into the Everglades souvenir ashtray.
She squints at her cigarette:
one bitter puff and she wrings its neck
in the overflowing nest of ashes,
the lipstick on its butt so alluring
that when I start smoking candy cigarettes
I put the lit end in my mouth
and everybody laughs, especially my aunt,
smoke haunting her head like ghosts of family.
Editor's note: "My Aunt Smokes Another Lucky" previously appeared in Colander, published by Carnegie Melon University Press, and it appears here courtesy of the author.