Saturday, October 27, 2012

Yeah, Phid died.  But I was doing just fine.  Really.  John's sister had arrived, and we were talking about all the stuff that needed talking about:  Where's the will?   How to tell Bill?  Whom to call?  When to have the wake?  All was well.

Until it was time to set the table.


John's in the
living room, with the lights on, strumming
Here Comes the Sun
into the stale air
pushing out the darkness with
"Little Darlin', it seems like years since it's been here..."

everything's so alive
and yellow and light and empty

i enter the dining room with
five white plates
because there are five of us

but suddenly I don't know
where we're all going to sit
because she sat there
and there later, after the wheelchair
and there's no place for us
for all of us
because there's five of us, and only five chairs,
and if i place a plate for all of us
that means there's no place
for her

and i sink to my knees
holding the white plates that i can't
place

she took up so much space, for so long, and now she's gone,
and i don't know how to fill her place
at the table









10 comments:

Marie said...

You have a true poet's heart, Sue. I imagine there will be more unexpected moments like that in the future. Sending love your way.

Jane-0 said...

So many times I've imagined holding those plates and filling the room to replace the absent. No better way I can imagine than to fill the void with poetry.

You touched down soft like a kiss blown from far far away.

I miss being near your magic.

keep writing! Jane

Jane-0 said...

So sorry to hear that you are hurting.

Anonymous said...

Dear Sue,

I was honoured to meet your mother-in-law when I visited you. I hope that the full, rich life she lived will live on in your childrens’ memories. My thoughts are with your family during this time of passing.

Kirsten

Julia M said...

Very, very lovely, Sue. How fortunate you were to have a mother-in-law like her!

ani rose said...

lovely... and I can see it... and it made me cry ....

there is that place,little spaces inside which never do get re-filled, because it's only for them, whom we have lost... but it does FEEL different at different times....

blessings, hugs, love...

dont bother said...

Thank you for sharing the bitter and the sweet times with us, dear Sue. I'm holding you and your family in my heart.

Kate Crawford said...

What a lovely, poetic tribute to your mother-in-law, Sue. The image of the place setting brings us all right there, instantly, with you.

Thank you.

Kate said...

Sorry! You have expressed this particular type of pain exactly right.

Rebecca said...

Sue, I am so sorry for your loss. I hope you and your family find some comfort and peace in the days ahead.

Your poem is gorgeous.