Old Woman’s Lament

Oh sigh

Am I

Not done yet?

It’s been twenty-six


Nights and days.


Like Whitney snowy am I

Now up top.

But woman still below

Am I.

No hag yet.

Breathing yet.

Not dead yet.

Yet upright.

Traveling still on.

Looking out

Behind and

Beyond for bears.

So far, so far yet to go.

Is there Ice cream up ahead?

A shady seat?


Perhaps not.

Or not yet.

What’s yet to come?

Still, what else can be?

Yet carry on.

Storm tossed


I hope.

O I hope.

Only sometimes looked away.


Was that a false path

Or a true?

But yet

I never ran,

Or even walked

Out on this.


Yet spilled some sighs.

Linda Howe Steiger retired from UC Berkeley in 2008 where she was director of Technology Transfer at the Institute of Transportation Studies. She has written all her life and since retirement taught a class in how to write memoir and published two murder mysteries (Fog and Terroir). She’s married with two grown children and she and her husband are on the Priority "Ready" list at Kendal at Oberlin.