In Loving Memory of "Mema" Lorene

Two lives before this one
I lived in a world of intrigue
and mystery. Born a thief,
as a child I pilfered
toy airplanes and trucks
from my neighbors
and every nearby store.

When I grew to accountability,
I became adept at stealing
emeralds, sapphires,
diamonds and pearls.
No one could identify me.

One dark winter night
I slipped into the store
 of the wealthiest
dealer.  I raked hands full
of jewels into the bag
 I carried. When I turned 
to leave, I saw two policemen,
guns drawn, advancing 
toward me.  I ran.
Bullets pierced my body
and killed me.  My brother
had betrayed me
for the bounty they offered.

In this life I cannot
look at a gun.

-Betty Personette