Communicating After Death
A shot glass you once held and gave
to us – a souvenir
has been on display since you
at parties among gin – scotch – whiskey
and there – a Schlitz shot glass
as if staring at us with unseen eyes. . .
A simple token of you brings back
laughter – stories – tales of when you
too were here embracing life –
it was this a glass we brought . . .
I told you so
while I talked to you on the porch –
asking, “Please show us you are here
A different week – broken mirrors. . .
not knowing why two broke into
smithereens – then a glass moves
moving dust around – a clean circle,
we knew it was you
He planned this meeting with a
stranger, me with your shot glass
inside my purse. It was outside,
on the porch where I asked you,
“please be sure to mention the
glass, broken mirrors, and tell us
you are here.”
Here among strangers we sit, as
we listen to sad stories of the dead,
a child what she held in her arms,
who kissed her last, who she said she
loved before she closed her eyes for
good – here where tears flow easily
among the onlookers.
We talked all our life about your
death, since you fought so long and
hard – and you promised you would
let me know you were here – and yes
you have for many years… but what
about those mirrors?
That evening I knew you were listening –
I knew you were following my steps
The medium stared at me, you were
That girl over there, in the blue sweater,
our eyes connected –
she said, “I see two – a paternal
Grandmother pushing to be heard
first and you mother – holding
a baby in your arms.”
Every word connected us – but
when she held up her hand and
said, “Your mother is
talking about a little glass” my
husband nearly collapsed.
Then she said, “those mirrors –
she didn’t break the expensive one…”
and when she told me not to
soak my feet, it was expensive –
supportive shoes I need. . .
mother’s words continued and
she wasn’t skipping a beat – she
did not want to stop telling me
she was here, with us, next to us –
and all she said was perfectly
said, as if she were saying it in her
I know for sure your
with me – between us as we
ride – you said so, knowing I
do not drive. . .
you told us you were listening
as I rode with my husband.
You were with me on mother’s
day when a stranger handed me
a good luck plant – a man gave me –
Irish Shamrocks – since I moaned
I had no mom.
So, we continue – we communicate
without words – your love remains
strong now – as if we looked
eye to eye – that day we toasted to life.