Thursday, April 18, 2013

Cold comfort

The kind words said,
The tender hands
Rest briefly on mahogany,
The hard men come
In their t-shirts and their caps
To drop you here
To rest beside the ashes
Of your love.

The die is cast,
The dirt and flowers
Thrown into the pit,
The carpet rolled away.
The wailing imprecations
Of the lost and the bereft resound,
Awakening responses in my heart
Too harsh to bear.

And so I walk away,
to sit on this marble bench
Set here by some other loving family
Thoughtful in their loss
And stare through these dead branches
At a sky too blue, a day too warm
To witness to the trauma
that lies beneath.

And as tears dry
And focus comes again
To vision dulled with weeping
I see that each fine branch
So delicately etched against the sky
Carries, at its tip,
A bud, the promise of new life:
What looks like death
is life already launched anew
Though spring
And the day
And this new life without you are all new.

The marble seat grows cold:
I shiver, and I feel a coat
Steal over my shoulders--
"You'll catch your death;
(Too late, I want to shout--
It's already here,
The intimations of mortality
Too numerous to bear)
Put on your coat;
it's not as warm as it looks out here"
And I understand:
It's not as cold as it looks, either.
Your kindness is still here,
It's just taken other forms
And echoes still in the warm tones
Of your son.

1 comment:

Cheryl said...