Crystal Clear Persuasion

After the car wreck and two operations on her knees
she was still having
trouble with her back and her doctor wanted to recommend a surgeon
for a possible ruptured disk 
but she said no, sir, she had had all the cutting
she could stand just now, thank you,
so for about six months she limped to work and cleaned tables 
and swept and put up the chairs 

with precious little relief until finally one night
she showed up wearing a Vote for Dole refrigerator magnet
stuck to her arm with duct tape and when
we asked her what was that for
she said she had found a doctor in K-town who said
it was an indisputable fact that magnets could help take away the pain
in a great many cases like hers
and he just happened to have a few Magna Wave 
Miracle Bracelets on hand
for only seventy-nine ninety-nine each
which nearly gave her a hissy what with the forty dollars she owed already 

just for the visit
and besides she had grew up in the Great Depression she said 
and it seemed a sin to pay 
hard earned money for something that wasn't even a precious metal 
so she reckoned 
she would just have to do without, thank you, 
but when she got home 
and reached for the jello Mr. Dole slid off 
the fridgerator door
from the weight of four hospital bills and a Mother's Day card 

from her daughter
and when she stooped down to pick Bob up she felt 
this sudden surge of magnetism shoot right up through her arm
and into her back and it spread over her 
like a blue Valium
so peaceful she broke into tears and thanked the Lord Jesus
for the miracle he had brought to pass 
so when she went to bed she at first put on a sock
with the magnet tucked inside 
which seemed to work fairly well for a while
but later in the night the pain came back again so she got up 
and fastened old Bob to her arm 
like you see here she said and you can believe this or not
but she had not suffered a single twinge of agony the entire weekend long
and if Mr. Robert Dole was here this very minute
she would kneel down and kiss his hero's hand and tell him 

if a man of his age
could still reach out across the ether to a wretch like her 
who knows maybe Liddy ought to get some too

James Lineberger