Musings #74 - Dare I Speak of Heaven? (published in Roanoke Review)

DARE I SPEAK OF HEAVEN?

Wild rabbit, stillborn – discovered

in a hunt for bright-colored eggs

hidden among the tulips.

The child doesn’t know what it is,

what it means – looks to me

for clue, some reaction. Last week,

we watched a blue spruce

cut down in its prime. She leaned

back in my arms to look at my face.

I said, This is sad. Bowing her head

on my shoulder, she sighed,

I’m sad too. To cheer us, I showed her

the stump, woodchips and sawdust

that bugs and worms will turn to soil.

This time, I want to cover her eyes,

hide this stillness. I don’t know

what to say – some things

perish before first pulse and beat.

We wrap the tiny form in tissue

and newspaper, dig a shallow hole

in the shade of an oak,

then say, Goodbye.

Enough for now.