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(a poem I wrote in 2001 while decorating my grandparents graves. My youngest son was with me.

Mid afternoon at the cemetery
and two yellow butterflies were kissing
between the headstones
above the buffalo grass
beside my son and I

The Iris were blooming
petals of fragrant purple and white
the yucca were growing wild with delight
porcupines in disguise
and baby cactus littered the long and lonely isles

Every now and then a pinwheel fluttered
spinning beside some young ones grave
shining reminder of bits of the future
lost to heaven
at too early an age

Meadow larks sang in the cemetery trees
and someone had hung wind chimes up
OH what a beautiful melody they played
when nudged ever so softly by hand or by breeze
a pipe organ here in the trees!

We decorated the graves my son and I
and talked about life and death and
‘Why do bodies have to die Mommy. . . why?’
sorrow and tears springing to his eyes

Explanations of sickness and wear and tear
seemed to satisfy
and tears dried he turned thoughtful eyes to me
explaining that he would come back
as a rabbit when HIS body decided to die –
my heart lurched at this thought
and I hugged him close and we watched

butterflies between headstones
kiss one another goodbye – then FLY

Sheryl 2001

July 2020

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