Updated: Mar 20, 2022
Thus we spend our years with sighing: it is a valley of tears, but death is the funeral of all our sorrows.
Cara soars out the door past
mum's pursed lips to the hillside.
She scampers up to the vista,
stupid and brilliant as a teenager
fleeing towards honking friends
on a Friday night.
It's dead quiet.
The stillness screams starkly
at the smog of city noise still
faintly ringing in her ears.
Bustling ghosts evaporating
against the halt of coastal air.
She flops backwards into the
asters and a billow of ragweed
catches her body like a parachute.
Inhaling, she stretches and squints
one eye at the garden,
smiling wryly at the buttercups
that mum wrestled out last year.
They gleam cheekily out of careful
rows of orange tulips, several
more than there were.
The wind suspends its breath
as she feels for the turn of season,
fingers spread on the grass.
Lying very still in the earth,
Cara’s thoughts drift to
the way the roots of a seed
reach low into the dirt before
being summoned into the sky.
Her eyelids close, and open,
until twilight cloaks her
bare shoulders with dusk.
A candle flickers at each window like a
vigil as she walks back down to mum's house.
She blows one out on the way in the door
with the gusto of a kid over a birthday
cake who doesn’t want any boyfriends.
Kissing her father on the top of his head,
she walks up the hollow wooden stairs,
waiting for the delayed mumble of goodnight
and something about the newspaper.
She blows out one more candle and a light
laugh parts her lips to grace the dark
of her old room. A ribbon of smoke
unravels from the wick in front
of the window and her eye drifts with its
indecisive merengue into sleep.
Ashes to the wind or confetti, Cara thinks,
depending on one's point of view.
1 Corinthians 15:42-44
1 Peter 1:23-25