Wednesday, November 2, 2016

everyDay Of The Dead

I haven't seen her headstone, but
I'm told it's beautiful.
Being there for the burning
killed any interest in the ashes.
I can cry anywhere -
why go to a piece of granite?

Still, my own ghost
pulls at my skin.
My name is listed
beneath hers.
Daughter - will you come
early too?

I suppose I could wander
through the plastic flowers and angels
looking for the tree
I vaguely remember -
the hearse cutting to the right
to back in -

until I admit defeat and give up.
She will be missed
Beloved Mother
Another angel in heaven
Grief repeats itself
stone to stone,
so what's the difference?

When I was fifteen,
cemeteries were a place
to smoke pot and drink.
We'd dare each other
to venture outside
the halo of headlights

and tempt the spirits.
There was a grave that was said
to glow when the moon
hung right, and all the kids
swore it was haunted,
but I never saw

a thing, despite looking long
and hard into the dark.
Maybe I wasn't quite high enough.
Or maybe, the haunt
was waiting for me
years away in a different place -
a different graveyard -
a different grave -
stone glowing
when the moon hangs right.
Daughter - will you come
early, too, and soon?

For Midweek Motif~Day of the Dead at Poets United


Kerry O'Connor said...

There's a far more subtle form of haunting, and you have described it on an emotional level which is most affecting. Living with the loss is sometimes harder than the losing itself.

Sherry Blue Sky said...

I resonate with Kerry's comment - the grieving is harder than the losing, and no one tells you this. This is a very haunting poem and everything in me responds to its question: no, not too soon, you still have so much to do.

Susan said...

Your poem captures the teen fascination with cemetaries and paradox of grief--the siren call--personal: "I can cry anywhere / why go to a piece of granite?" And not: "Grief repeats itself / stone to stone, / so what's the difference?" and still the grief, if not the stone waits for us "years away." How it haunts and what to do is a little like following a calling or writing a poem. The repetition of difference is a persistent echo.

Susan said...

I just finished reading this most fascinating novel called "the comet seekers" which is a little fantastic in its exploration of the relationship between the living and the dead. It links comets, Irish folk beliefs, history and the Bayeux Tapestry in the museum in Bayeux France.

Gillena Cox said...

"Grief repeats itself
stone to stone,
so what's the difference?"

grief indeed has its personal status as you have so well remarked in this poem

much love...

Buddah Moskowitz said...

So much wonderful imagery here. Yes, I have to drive 55 miles to see my father's plaque in the ground. Last year on Father's Day, I left him an ofrenda of beer and peanuts. Your poem was perfect. Love you, Mosk

Myrna R. said...

I don't usually visit graves. They exist within me. I like how you express the grief that accompanies us as we mourn our losses. Lovely writing.

Old Egg said...

How beautifully you have written this. I like returning to some of my wife's favorite places hoping she may be doing the same thing even though I won't see her.

Sanaa Rizvi said...

This is the most moving, most evocative poem I have ever read, MZ ❤️ so beautifully penned!

Sumana Roy said...

"I can cry anywhere -
why go to a piece of granite?"...touches deeply...

grapeling said...

I never quite understood the name of the band, the Grateful Dead, until after having seen a dozen shows, and listening to the rabid fans talk and talk and talk about this song or that, and thinking back to my own trips thru the local cemetery.

It's only the living who show no gratitude. ~

Fireblossom said...

Wow. I bet this cost you to write. It stings, and moans.

Marja said...

Wow I love the imagery in this very haunting poem and also the personal feel of the experience. Very moving!