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Strange Blues: Poem Inspired by Edie Windsor

Hildy had strange blues I mean she had
some mighty strange blues after Janie died.
Hildy knew all about the blues—
death blues & love gone bad blues
no moneyfoodorliquor blues
homesick blues and Momma blues
Daddy blues and too old to tango blues
but these blues weren’t like those.
These were strange blues.

She was a stranger by law
to Janie said the judge,
calling her ‘The Deceased’.
They weren’t spouses. How could they be?
They were both women, each having 2 boobs
one pussy and no dick on the premises.
Thus there’d been no wedding no license no cake
no spouses and what about spice?
Hildy could still laugh but
Legal Strangers said the judge
pounding his gavel.
That’s what you are: A Legal Stranger.

That’s what gave Hildy the strange blues
for sure. She’d held Janie’s hand
‘til her spirit left her tired body
so how was she a stranger?  No, said the judge, not
a stranger; a Legal Stranger. Look it up.
So she did. Hildy looked under L and S in the big dictionary
in the living room and the paperback dictionary
in the kitchen with the cookbooks
and she looked under the catboxes and
in the bookshelves and in the drawers of
all four desks. (One for each grownup, one
for each kid. Intellectuals, friends would tease them.)
In every dictionary she turned to L and then to S.
but could not find Legal Strangers
which is why Hildy’s got these
strange blues tonight: real strange blues.

Get out your guitar
and strum the Legal Stranger Blues.
Betcha can’t. Betcha won’t.
O sure, you can play the Sam Cooke blues
The Ray Charles blues Aretha blues
Johnny Cash blues and
the Last of the Red Hot Momma Blues

but you and me, we don’t know any
Legal Stranger blues or any Legal Strangers,
only Strangers in a Strange Land
of judges, no spouses, no wives and no rights.


One response »

  1. Hi, fabulous dirty laundry. Great poem. Sad-angry-strange-wrong topic. Super. Juanita Rice

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