Tag Archives: death

Where I wished the wrens

Where I wished the wrens the wasps the face of the nestbox wrapped like a mummy its mouth occluded saying oh oh beneath the grotesque paper mask saying where are my wrens my beauties where their perfect song? Where I wished the smooth grass the gopher’s mounds fresh each morning soft sepulchers shrouding some dank […]

Restored

I saw you there the night before, a leggy black pearl against the glossy white tub, and made a note: Spider. Remove before showering. And the next morning remembered too late, and bore your sodden body to the sunny deck rail where I had meant to leave you, alive. And lay you there gently, lifted […]

Sprinkling the dead

Having been watered, they might grow. Rupture the soft lie of silk and mahogany, the sullen concrete casings, and emerge in the bardo of possibility, small imperfect seeds feeling again the tug of the sun.

The lullaby you finally hear

So wickedly prescient that foreshadowing opener Rock-a-bye baby on the treetops Rock-a-bye and you’ve scarcely said hello to the world. When the wind blows the cradle will rock gently for a time. When the bough breaks you will fall through your life down baby down cradle and all the ground some unknowable distance beneath. So […]

Driving after dark

We drive alone at night behind headlights that ply the roads as if we could see where we are going as if we could see those bright and narrow shafts saying this is where you will be in a second this is where you will be saying the path is clear and safe while the […]

Leaving

I hoped he was dead when I woke the next morning,  eight hours after I left him holding the hand of the next hospice volunteer. We call it “vigil:”  a bearing witness and keeping company with the actively dying. We do it for them and their loved ones —  exhausted, grieving families and friends — who are desperate […]

Briefly through

  Timmy Wind blows briefly through his parents’ helpless arms less a child than an element that could not bear the heavy head the veiled light the damp and dimpled fingers the constraint of flesh where once was space the intolerable capture of his formless beauty Timmy Wind blows briefly through the life he did […]

x-ray xray of hand

Rise

Here alone am I the most vital thing if you don’t count the birds a hummingbird’s wings beat every .02 seconds that live in the canopy of trees above the headstones. I sit on a bench near the cemetery’s edge to meditate but my mind wanders neurons mediate thought in the span of a hummingbird’s […]

Food chain

If you feed wild birds long enough,  you begin to feel as if you are doing something important. Especially during the winter, when the mercury flirts with zero and every natural food source  is blanketed in snow,  the birds come to depend on your largesse. In return, they reliably offer pleasures only sporadically available in the realm […]

That dog won’t hunt

As the news cycle surrounding George H.W. Bush’s death slowly petered out last week, I encountered stories about the late president’s service dog, and images described touchingly as the yellow lab paying his last respects. Prepared to get weepy, I opened a photo of the dog one news organization described as “guarding” his dead master’s […]