This is what she bequeathed,

though I didn’t see it then,
muddled in grief and regret,
unable to recognize anything
but the gone-ness of her.

And it took time—far too long,
it seemed—to absorb the here-ness
of her, still so present if I could
let my mind to drift her way
without allowing the cloud
of sorrow to automatically
overtake me.

I gradually learned to hear
her voice as though she’d just
called to arrange dinner out
and a trip to the bookstore after,
her voice trailing into my ear:

Mexican? Japanese? What
are you hungry for? Maybe
the Indian place on Broadway?

Then I could summon
seasoned joy, recall conversations
that seemed ordinary at the time,
not acknowledging, despite
the diagnosis, that there would
be a finite number, an end date.

And as I type now, I hear
her dropping in:
What end date? You think
this is over?

And there’s her wicked good
laugh echoing through the ether,
her presence eliciting a chuckle,
as she always has.

(for Georgann Turner, March 1, 1951–Aug. 17, 2021)

Ron and Georgann Turner, Poulsbo, Washington, 2015 / Photo: Dick Schmidt

About janishaag

Writer, writing coach, editor
This entry was posted in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s