GRIEVING IS NEVER OVER. I wrote this right after the first group of holidays ended; 7 mths. after his death. A mundane task like doing dishes…Something I’ve done thousands of time. Going on without him.
One Task, Revisited
Starlings and titlarks bob greetings to each other.
Partake in barren spoils;
Yammering at meager winter offerings
in the year-end yard.
I turn a rag through a tumbler.
The observer, the watch woman.
Beyond the smudged pane: the recycling bin.
Hobo green. Smacking of condescension.
Beneath accusing limbs of the slumbering Maple.
The Pollyanna plow has half-concealed this receptacle.
Scalding water wakes my knuckles;
a sublime arthritic remedy.
Mugs knock elbows under the faucet spray.
My suds release kaleidoscopic bubble spheres
that rise so pretty but they disappear.
SO where are you? Where are you now?
The repetitive tabby on the counter-trancelike-
bats the faucet stream in two.
There is a rhyme to this sequence of events.
This dish done
shall be done again.
I know your physical body is set free-
from the constraints of the suffering.
The conjob of hope was a clinging vine.
The vine’s gone.
This pruning has revealed pillars there;
shrouded before. I’m going to assume
they are strong. Because you told me I was.
As for physical remnants of you, (except for what went
into the stream) -you stay
inside the container that’s
awash in the blue
flickers from the chatterbox TV;
in the adjacent room.
but where are you?
These transient thoughts of now silent you
This glass in my hand — I’m squeezing it too hard.
Water burbles over the aluminum basin.
Sings with self-assurance; the water!
It chants in its sensuous brogue. CRACK!!!
The pretty blood flows over and around;
through my rejuvenated fingers; knuckles.
One task revisited;
I pause to consider as I stare
unfocused, through the smudged window separating me
from the cold that plays…
the silver-tongued snowflakes in their serenade.
No two the same.