What tender sparks of warmth
Can I remember?
You canned in the summer.
You baked in December.
We built fires in the stove.
When snow fell, you drank tea hot
And read to us from ancient books
Like the leather bound Curiosity Shop.
Your affection burned like a finished fuse,
And your expectation echoed a bottomless abyss
I learned to thank you for what little I could do,
And to apologize for the myriad of ways I’m remiss.
You became the opposite of God to me:
A gnashing mouth set to chew,
But surely there was tenderness once,
And would I know Him if not for you?
I sit here cut in two as they cut into you,
And here I cannot sleep.
My grief picks up a painted brush
But the sorrow makes me weep.
And shall I drive the many miles
To stand beside your pestle tongue,
Can any gestures now we make
Unring what we have rung
And if that bell tolls for thee,
Is this the way our story runs?
To be ever incomplete, but forever done?