Joel Savishinsky did stand-up comedy for 45 years; in other words, he is a retired professor, who taught anthropology and gerontology. His Breaking the Watch: The Meanings of Retirement in America, won the Gerontological Society of America’s book-of-the-year prize. A Pushcart Prize nominee and California State Poetry Society award winner, his poetry, fiction and essays have appeared in Atlanta Review, Beyond Words, Blue Collar Review, California Quarterly, The Examined Life Journal, New Verse News, The New York Times, Passager, SLANT, and Windfall. In 2023, The Poetry Box published his collection Our Aching Bones, Our Breaking Hearts: Poems on Aging. He lives in Seattle and considers himself a recovering academic and unrepentant activist. Joel recommends donating to El Centro de La Raza.
Some would call my gaze a sacrilege, but I thought of those generous cheeks as a sacrament, a gift to get me through the eternity of Father Brayton’s droning explanations, his everlasting sermons on eternity.