Friday, September 09, 2011

Cleaning Up

A poem for Lee. This is how it was SUPPOSED to go.


So what was there to do?
He was gone, and so
there was the cleaning up.
The dispersal of goods,
sorting and separating,
matching
memories and mementos.

But he was meticulous and
everything was in its place.
So there was very little of him
over which my hands could grieve.
Nothing to keep my mind company

until it was time to do the laundry.
I could have put it into a bag,
placed it in the garbage,
left it at a thrift store
dropped it in a fire
sent it heavenward.

Instead, I washed it all,
hanging shirts that once
took his form, carefully folding
underwear, one pair of the dungarees stained from kneeling in the garden,
shorts that once showed his knees,
knees stained by Earth and Clay.
Each put away, and when that was done,
there was nothing left
but the sorting and pairing of his socks.

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