Mother, eighty-four, took Uncle
James for a ride yesterday.
Drove her brother to the cemetery
To visit Daddy and Mike.
After, she called their flowers lovely,
Then asked, "Where's Daddy?
Where is my Husband?"
For the first time in fifteen years
I dream of Mike, him driving up
In Mother's big Oldsmobile,
Then waiting. We talk, he nods.
Now, I realize he has come
For Mother. As the old ones say
To take her home. I go to her
Bed, grab her hand. I'm waking,
Mother's hand cooling in mine.
April 15, 2009
Today, my little sister and I
Will go to select a coffin
For Mother. Eighteen years ago,
I went with Mother to choose
Mike's. Yesterday, my Mother died.
Like a kaleidoscope twisted,
And twisted, the world
Broken, scattered bits of glass.
I dreamed of Mother a couple
Of nights ago. She was blond,
And slim, walking by a lake.
The dream was in slow motion,
Washed in silver. A ballet.
A friend offers, she wants you
To know everything's okay,
That in death we're young again.
And me, the dead don't look
Back, that is their earned grace.