Ladies Who Lunch

Four businesswomen of a certain age
in serious suits, networking. A taut,
tanned, author, speaker, corporate advisor
whispers, Let's discuss the f word. I think,
How quaint. The others quickly confess to
their studly mates' need for nightly sex, my f
must stand for fatigue, but fuck
ain't the word she's avoiding, it's fifty—
which I (again unique) admit to having
been. My never-aging peers move on
from "facelift or not" through skin peelings
and fat suckings to the m word
she hesitates to say: menopause,
which no one but me seems to think
she's really having, thanks to various,
much debated forms (as to source,
not need) of estrogen. I say I'll take
hot flashes, I did my drugs in the sixties.
Mineral waters and decafs downed, a flurry
of we-must-do-this-agains, out into late afternoon
hurrying to get back to where we were.