On the long drive to the cemetery,
our three year old fretted
because we did not bring bathing suits.
She thought we were going to the swimetery.
Puzzled, I tried to explain. We would not
Mourning dulled my ears and I missed
the desire in her voice, the hope that somehow,
magically, your death would prove to be a dream
and you would return, bearing gifts.
That is what she knew; you left, and you returned.
Death that snatched for keeps
was a new and bitter lesson to learn.
You left too soon to know
she could not hear.
When the doctor discovered her problem,
he simply put a tube in her ear
to drain away the sludge. Curing the problem
of made up words, the surgery was ineffective
on her incessant belief
that you were not really gone.
We were ill-prepared to swim
the rivers of grief,
a widow and her orphan. Drowning
in sorrow, it was so hard to accept
that you would not come swimming
back to us, no matter
how many times we donned our swimsuits
and waited patiently beside your gravestone.
Sandefer resides in Southwest La. with her husband and three children,
where she struggles to write poetry about the deeper things of life, sometimes
seen with a slightly skewed glance. Due to her reluctance to experience
rejection, she has only recently begun to actually share her poetry with
the unsuspecting world. Her work has appeared in Kota Press, PoetryRepairShop,
Poetic Voices and will soon be seen in Dead Mule School of Literature.