Saturday, May 7, 2016

Mother's Day

Mom is buried far away
I need to make a pilgrimage
caress the family headstone
feel the imprint of her name
  and my grandparents’
  and my uncle’s
  and my father’s
trace with my finger
the dates of her birth and death
and place fresh flowers
in the accompanying vases

I need to remember
lighthearted days and sad
her face when young
  and when she was very old
recall how my hand felt
in hers
when she was strong for me
  before I became strong for her
how she cared for me
  before I cared for her

I need to see again
her eyes alive with laughter
  too soon vacant
  with dementia
I need to see her walk, stroll
  before those days
  of wandering zombie-like

She died a shell of herself
  my eyes affixed
  to her last exhalation
body spent
soul intact
Mom still
always

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