Thursday, April 19, 2012

Christmas Gift (PAD Prompt)

I'd taken a nap in late afternoon
to escape
because you'd come in to cook your Christmas dinner.
I slept a few hours
deep dreamless sleep
When I woke I could smell chicken
cooked to long.
Not wanting to, I got out of bed
turned off the oven, looked at the clock.
You must have fallen asleep, so dinner was put away
for whenever you would wake.
There was evening,
and there was morning,
the last day.

Morning, I got up and looked in the kitchen
You'd not been in.
You must not be feeling well. I sighed.
I'd better go out and check if you need anything.
Put on shoes, go out the back door, walk through
the beautiful snow to your apartment.
Amazing snow, so heavy, peaceful, it felt good.
I saw him sitting on the couch
diet coke in hand, remote on his lap,
absent eyes staring at nothing.
Back through the fresh snow
walking in my own footprints
up the back steps
into the house.
Kids 20 and 21 looking at me.
Dad's dead.
Called 911.
Called one son staying over in the next city.
His reply,
"Well, it's over."
Yes, it's over for us
and beginning for us.
What do we do with this new life handed us
this new beginning
this life without terror?
Looking through the phone book,
I chose a funeral home.
There was evening
and there was morning,
the first day.

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