Sunday, February 26, 2012


These days, all he seemed to eat
Was soup.
He could barely bear
To fill the bare cupboards
With anything but soup.
He did not cook.
That was always her doing.
For 43 years,
She was the feeder of his appetite
And his soul.
The love of his life,
His heart-twin kite,
That carried his soul beyond the clouds;
And now she was gone.
He had watched her hold on
For the last few weeks of her life
Barely able to take a breath.
Her beautiful silver hair had been stolen away,
The loot of the most terrible, thieving fiend of all;
He had sat visiting with her in the hospital,
Never leaving the laminate room,
Eating nothing but soup.
Even then, even with
The pain, and wheezing, and shame
Of her last days
She still managed to take his breath away.
Now, she was gone
But he was not.
He bore the grief with stunning dexterity
The only way he knew how;
By doing ordinary things.
By resolving to eat soup.

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  1. ugh...having watched my MIL waste away in her final days...that really played with my heart strings...soup may be the strongest to stomach you know...

  2. Bittersweet...wonderful work.

  3. It's hardest on the one left behind to watch....

  4. Beautiful. Sometimes it's the things of earth which ground us when something completely surreal surrounds our day, our life. You have captured this extremely well here, well done!

  5. You know his loss, in your poem you express what he is feeling, what he has lost. You feel it too, know it too, know it with him.
    Perhaps he will find a little more comfort and consolation in knowing you know and you feel it also. Maybe he will feel a little better. . . . And he will have his soup,too.

    I hope his sadness and yours too will subside soon.

  6. What a sad story but told bravely and with clarity of compassion. You have really distilled the essence of the pain and vacuity that death brings in its terrible ordinariness.

  7. Oh my....I really believe 50 or 100 years from now people will look back at the cancer treatments of today and wonder how anyone could be so barbaric. It's heartbreaking, even when it works.