She’d learned it all from Lucy: how a life of grand schemes
& wars of the sexes made it worth living,
how starting out in a small apartment could end up in a house in the country,
how lifelong best friends & a long-awaited child
could be part of anyone’s American Dream.
Caroline Carmichael had found purpose in a stolen life,
rather than the life she had chosen as Martha Sedgwick.
She was the water,
Hillary & Winston the powdered mix,
& blended, they made up the Instant Family.
Beth was but a faint percussion,
Amy, a bold stroke of fresh color,
while Jo captured & condensed life as she knew it,
& Meg mothered the future.
Tomorrow was always another day—
that mythical time when all would be well.
Yet she pined for the one man
who represented that lost cause
in which she’d found happiness.
She was one in a dozen,
a ginger with a snap,
the heart of a lion,
the breadth of a lamb.