Now, my mother done her dying,
I come back again to my own life
that I had taken off,
the way you take a coat off
and hang it on a hook behind the door
when seasons change,
sometimes forgetting where it is
until you feel the cold again.
When word that she was ill
fell like a wounded bird
into time’s tranquil pool,
I just ignored the cold.
I walked out into night
to take her hand as she
left quickly for its distant edge.
Through four cold months, we pulled
stars down to light that edge,
blue-hot stars we’d fired
in long years of love.
Family, friends and names that
dozed like dormant flowers in a field
flew up in such a rush of love
around us that November turned to May.
Then, one icy day in January,
I cleared our sidewalk of a heavy snow,
in brief, staccatoed intervals,
lest leaving her too long, the
fragile thread would break
without my benediction.
It was Tuesday, I remember,
but time was caught behind
a wall of silence. It moved
at half-speed. Within its womb
that birthed my mother to another life,
I was timeless, still, unborn again.
When my mother died, she did it
just as I had left my life
four months before, with
love and not a glance behind,
no brief regret to do
what faith required her to do.
She drew that thin last breath
from air we shared, as my cheek
laid tenderly on hers, I whispered,
“Go on … and I love you.”
Music: Halleluia – Leonard Chen – played here by:
Violin: Leonardo Barcellos: Cello: Daniel Enache; Guitar: Leonardo Barcellos