Shhh … she sleeps.
So calm and beautiful
amidst the willows and hollies,
a smile on her face, no worries.
Does she dream?
Of roads not taken and dresses not worn,
a plane flight never had, the decisions not made,
the words unspoken, the heights unreached.
Does she remember?
Her first kiss, the colour of his eyes,
the wedding night and her children being born.
The first blow, bitterness swallowed with a smile,
his betrayal and the night after.
The small pox and measles, grazed knees and broken bones,
the holidays and long car rides, all the hugs and kisses and love.
Does she worry?
If her children are safe and sound, forever protected in her embrace,
if the house is clean and garden mended,
clothes washed and food set on the table,
duties done and pretence well kept.
Did she forget?
The throbbing pain, the sorrow, the illness,
long nights in hospital, alone and scared,
bed-ridden and disgraced,
forgotten by God, deceived by fate, fooled by life.
Yes … she sleeps.
All beautiful and calm
in her green dress, with her thick hair,
a burning imprint on my heart.