They gather again dressed in Sunday best
for Wednesday’s child. But no one seems to mind
on this bright day, hushed away. The vicar’s
familiar refrain chimes around the gravestones:
a measured response to events far afield.
In the distance, there’s shimmering betwixt
an' wean the guardian yews: reticence from when
saplings stood. A clutch that had long ago
let go down a path that had trailed off
to no rippling applause. Just warm drifts
of steam that evaporated away
that grey day when you decided to leave.
Now, you lie chilled. And strangers come, instead,
to pay their last respects, with bowed heads
and broad shoulders. They listen for the silence
between angry words and soothing sounds.
And they hear the magic of rhythm,
after your cheyne-choking breathing has stilled.