Posts Tagged ‘mourning’

in the passenger seat,
on a narrow country road,
my window rolled down,
the scent of warm grass thickens the air

beyond a low fence,
a gathering in black wool,
silent but for ritual words,
meaningless intonations of finality

as we draw near,
time congeals like aspic,
heat rises in dreamlike waves,
flowers wilt in reverent clumps

the surrounding faces
are strangers whom I know,
fugitives on the same path,
dogged by the same relentless pursuers

pain, sharp-edged,
a new reality that dawns
as the loved one stolen
is set into the receiving earth

near the center
one mourner stands,
brow blank, eyes questioning:
Who am I, without you?

as we pass
time releases us,
our hearts resume their muffled beat,
and we yearn for the peace of simple things

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Gossamer WheelPeople used to send flowers.

My mother died when I was five, so my memories of the house at that time are sketchy and incomplete. I remember with clarity that awful day when I learned the news, a congregation of black in our kitchen and living room, and the nightmares that tormented me through the following months. The house was likely filled with flowers, but I do not recall them.

Since that time, the sending of flowers has fallen out of favor. Death announcements now direct us to send contributions “in lieu of flowers.” How ironic that the “Flower Power” generation has turned this expression of sympathy and grief into a faux pas. (more…)

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