All Due Rites
After my mother died, I waited
for the nurses to bathe her,
and then watched as the trolley could
not maneuver out of the room.
The orderly lifted her easily
onto a shoulder and carried her into the night.
At Mass, her grandkids played a timid duet.
At the funeral home, we were asked
to provide identification.
Later, we threw peach roses
onto her coffin. The priest handed us a
DVD of the service. A decade later
I have not returned to her grave.
What a powerful moment with the orderly! The ending line is simple, and perfect.
Didn’t see the end coming, great poem
great poem. could it be telling us that all was not as it seemed?
I really enjoyed the choice of each detail here: painting with a fine brush.
That last line took my breath away. Literally. I stopped breathing as I reread it three times. I feel like I am seeing all of this playing out in front of me. There is so much power in the details chosen.