Stages of Grief

What you find is there's no definitive
progression from 1 to 5. You knew

acceptance long before the last time 
you guided her slowly to the bathroom 

(she had begun to fold into herself,
like a bird; could still walk, but not 

on her own) and sat her down on the cold 
toilet rim. You never thought to offer prayer 

that was plea; bargaining—for what? more 
time, more days of the mind's awful fading 

away, flashing less and less in random bursts 
of remembrance? As for anger—it came 

much earlier, learning of the forms of cruel 
neglect at the hands of kin supposed to be 

caring for her. Long years of bereavement, 
prior to the fact of her actual passing; 

coming upon fragments of her life in such
sad disarray. Until just before the end,

there was no denying the strength of her spirit.
Seven months ago, she'd asked for a swipe 

of lipstick, loved on slices of custard pie;
declared she wanted to live to be a hundred.

Until just before the end and the body's failing, 
still fiercely unwilling to let go yet of this life. 

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.