Where did you go
after your last breath,
before it became air?
An inhale. A presence.
One final expression in your eyes,
a slight lift in the brow.
I imagine you saw
all the light we cannot see.
An exhale. An absence.
“I hear a little bit of beating, still,
very faint. Ah, there.”
I saw the dim light
in your pupils go out.
There was a marked difference,
between before and after;
reconciled by the peace
in your face and body. Still,
I wondered where you went
Knowing I couldn’t call you back.
At once, you were at rest, a bear
bathing in heavenly sunlight strewn
across the kitchen and into the living
room. It was three-something
In the afternoon. Time didn’t
even cross my mind. It weighed
in my heart, as I sat back
on my heels, on my knees. I had
no idea where the past 15 years went.
The memories would flood me then
and later, anguish washing over my face
and hurting my eyes every mourning.
It is the end of an era,
that period of time we were all
Marked by your distinctive character.
I’m chasing so many details
in the profundity of your shadow.
The “G” key, Jonas, the Irish parade
that had nothing to do with you
Has everything to do with where you’ve gone
on to live. I wondered if you had turned
into light after your last breath. Easier
to travel, I thought. Last night I went
to my car to bring in a few things,
And the old woman shoveling
asked if I knew whose car that was–
“The white one?” I asked. “Right in front of me?”
Yes, she said with sincere worry.
“No, sorry. Why?”
Shame. They left their lights on.
I turned and looked at their tail lights,
illuminated by the headlights of my Jeep
parked behind it. “Oh no, it’s okay.
Those are my lights, reflecting.”
You came with me, I smiled.
You are my light now,
to shine, to show, and to reflect.
This is how we’ll bend time together.