Charlene is a prolific writer, having had not only her poetry previously published, but theater reviews and columns as well. She's contributed to everyone from Investor's Business Daily
to the La Jolla Village News
. She was also a contributor to "Chicken Soup for the Volunteer's Soul."
Joseph DeRugeriis was formerly an assistant conductor at San Diego Opera, principal conductor of Opera Theatre of Chicago, and artistic director of the San Antonio Festival. A resident of San Francisco, he died of AIDS while on holiday in New York City.
By Charlene Baldridge
(San Francisco, 1993; for Joseph De Rugeriis)
The fog has filled even the yard
thick, moist, inevitable
as they said it would.
You walk slowly toward the day's treatment,
hoping it is more than mere postponement;
you are terrified of the ultimate surrender,
and, even more, of the white obfuscation
that shrouds your mind.
During the morning, my hand is under your arm.
I pull you from chairs and
in the afternoon, I trim your toenails
the ultimate intimacy
I do not think to wear rubber gloves.
I am scolded for this,
but I never drew blood.