THE GREATEST GIFT SHE GAVE ME: A GRACEFUL DEPARTURE
This is the Room
I Never Saw Her Old; She’s in my Mirror Daily
This is the room which stood empty,
as you debated the price of the house.
Bleak white walls waiting to be owned again.
I wondered why buy a house, now?
This is the room whose windows looked
out into the tiny manicured backyard
which held your sandbox,
to “keep in touch with your inner child.”
This is the room where you sketched and molded clay
on the floor next to your grandchildren.
Did you know
you’d never see them grow bigger?
This is the room where we had picnics of lobster and artichokes
in your basket, on a beach towel,
when you became too
sick to go out.
This is the room where you played your beloved piano.
Notes floating through the jasmine night air
as I fought sleep: worrying, hoping,
hating the word cancer.
This is the room where I sat with you on the blue couch
you told me to not to worry about the children, they’d grow up fine;
don’t push the river; to live in the moment
because that’s all we have.
This is the room where you wanted the hospital bed.
You hated the aesthetics, still you wanted to be in the middle of life: the living room. To see your paintings; your books;
to be on the oriental rug. Not tucked away in the bedroom.
This is the room I entered on that foggy June morning.
I sat next to you and held your hand and told you we’d always be together. You wanted to play your piano one more time.
You squeezed my hand and took your final breath
This is the room where
I lost my mother,
and my friend.
This is the room where I grew up.