Death is no lover I would have chosen,
insistent, unyielding, wound-raw.
Embracing grief over and over again,
defiant, as if to make death wait, while
I burn the reality of presence, not absence,
into my blood and tissue beyond removing.
Later, and somehow more welcome
A last touch, now remembered less often
Leaves me watching for memories
The way I once watched the open door
waiting to see her coming in.
Over and over again it washes through me
this warm flushed birthing of loves return
making grief suddenly, unbearably passionate
as the water of tears replaces sweat
in our embrace.
My muscles tighten and then
loosen again when I cry.
Finally I will clutch my tears to me
holding her alive in my body
my eyes closed, passion warming
the last living chapter in our loving
before she is consigned to memory.