You’d never fail to
laugh away high school hardships
as we walked those haunted halls
in tandem, shiny pennies slipped
tight in our loafers.

Your dreams of being an architect 
shattered by your mom.
“Girls  can only be nurses or teachers.”
she ranted. You tore up your
carefully crafted blueprints.

We went our separate paths
until you asked me to be a 
bridesmaid at your nuptials.
I had to decline. It was finals
week at college.

Years later you were assigned
as my brother’s nurse. He faced
possible amputation of his
right foot. You pulled him
through. That foot survived.

Back home on a visit…my baby girl
in the grocery cart, your mom 
approached and poured out your 
suicidal ending with painstaking
details. Shock and horror filled my
cart. I wanted to muffle her words
from my baby’s ears.

i failed you.
Sorry too late.