along with several
other men of the
family He
His cousin’s brother in
law Saeed who stood
in the scorching
parking lot of
Abe’s Funeral Home
with a coke &
beam saying it
was just the way
he wanted to go,
in his backyard 
at a cookout for
his children &
then bam out of
nowhere a stroke
and he was gone
no fuss no muss
no long suffering
no nursing home

after Saeed’s big hug
He went in to view
the remains of His
younger cousin with
whom He shared a
name plus a set of
grandparents and 
not a tear in sight
but His cousin’s
sister (Saeed’s wife)
guarding her brother
saying she was mad at
god just mad at him
for striking down her
brother in his prime
right there at his own
picnic oh god why.
He couldn’t get this
image of His cousin out
of His head: putting
hot dogs on the grill
while children played
horseshoes and
suddenly falling over
checked out of this life
a miracle or 
a disaster

after lingering
with the two
surviving uncles
and several other
cousins from the
ten families
that make up
their tribe He
His cousin’s wife
with a protective
gaggle of women
who parted like
the Dead Sea to
let Him deliver
His condolence,
so calm she
seemed to greet her
husband’s weird cousin
who had come so far
just to tell her
how sorry He was