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Mrs. Parkinson I Presume?

Updated: Aug 4, 2023

I often see a lady I can’t place. Have I met her? I don’t know.

Was it school in those years so long ago.

Or was it somewhere recently? I cannot seem to find

Her name inside my head: it’s slipped my addled mind.

I’ve seen her in the butcher’s shop while waiting in the queue,

Standing opposite, and staring. When I move, she moves, too.

I feel so sorry for her, she has trouble making clear

What she wants, for when she speaks the words sound really queer.

I’ve seen her having a hair-do, she seldom says a word.

Sometimes she sits, transfixed. I wonder what occurred

To make her look so strange: her face is like a mask!

But as I leave my chair, she’s gone! One day I’m going to ask.

Once, I saw her paying at the till in a Tesco store.

She took so long, a queue drew up behind her. What is more,

She couldn’t press her code, then she fiddled with her purse,

Then she started shaking, and the queue grew even worse.

I asked my friends one day if they had seen her anywhere,,

That lady who walks slowly, shuffles, stumbles on the stair.

They said they see her often, in fact, they’d seen her that same day.

But they didn’t tell me who she was: they just turned and moved away.

But then, one night, I had a shock for those now familiar features

Stared back at me! All I could see was two pathetic creatures

Struggling hard to brush shared teeth. It took no great detection

To solve the riddle: she was me! She was my own reflection!

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