death poem

death poem

wandering from room to room

afraid of the radiator clangs

unsure if they can be fixed.

Sleep disturbed.

Looking at your yellow sweater on our bed

memories of dressy, happy times,

standing close by the fireplace,

you at least a head taller than I

a handsome couple

before my accident, before you got sick

before you died, before I got deathly ill.

Loving people come and go

a treasure, and yet I have not cried

for two days.

I'm lost..

The world looks plastic, fake

Life goes on for seemingly

everyone but me.

My heart was ripped in half

when you left. I want you back.

Others are kind and caring, but

who does all you did for me,

accommodating all my idiosyncrasies'

and illness

so kind and thoughtful

so much time to comfortably meander

on our quests, so comforting

and thrilling

my hand under the hand on your knee,

the feel of you.

Where is my life?

I'm so alone.

Just walk through that door.


Cold, chilled, fall is arriving,

Days sitting in the sun like a lizard


Empty spaces to fill


Drive for the first time,

to the river to walk?

No silver bullet waiting to wave to

to call to, to share, to hop


What would you have done?

Gone driving?

I doubt you would

travel to see your daughters.

Mother, you called me.

You would have made a good mother,

you said.

I understood the depth and breadth

of my love for you

when I found myself

doing things I said

I would never do again:

close the door of the family house

for the last time,

watch someone die of congestive heart failure.

Couples have a secret language,

code words, a life and world shared.

Plans for the future.

You loved me with a pure and loyal heart

You treasured me and found me strong and smart.

You were proud of me.

You would fight and die for me.

How can I bear this?

People love me, but

none of them are you.

About the Author

 Elsa Lichman, from Massachusetts, is a contributor to the journal as well a a columnist for the Waltham News Tribune and the Natural Living Journal. She is a retired social worker who has turned to the arts in retirement and during the Covid era: writing, singing, and drawing, as well as utilizing meditation, to gain perspective and heal.

Nov 30th 2021 ELSA LICHMAN

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