Posted tagged ‘departures’


September 3, 2017


She woke between pained breaths and said,
“they’ve all
crossed over.”

So, after soothing her shock
of white bang back,
we hurried to measure
the morphine,
pretty sure she would not try to get up
like she did the day before, anxious
to meet them,
but not certain,

“sweetheart,” saying, as we nosed the syringe into
the inside of the downward-tilted
cheek, then smoothed squeezed balm
over desert lips, “sweetheart,”
caressing back
that shock of hair again

until I lay down beside her at last
to listen to the full
and hollow,
not breathing myself
in some of the pauses.

So a good death goes,
and comes,
oh sweetheart.


Poem for my mother.