When her ghost lays beside me

If she could see me now,
a woman, and not a child
I wonder what she would think?

If she could hold the torso
with full breasts rather than
kiss the curve of my honey
flavored neck

that childhood flattered me with,
would she notice that in her death
I have grown

unrecognizable? She who saw me
last in dance class, tap shoes, the
satin customs I rushed out of
the apartment with;

dancing on the stage, willing to forget
her death cry.

Not understanding that as they slipped
the communion in, and her eyes fluttered
she wouldn't be coming back.

My mothers fragrant embrace when it was all over.

My mothers arms while I cried.

Carolyn sitting on the bed next to the body
(dead), saying, over and over:
'I can't believe she's gone.'

If you could see me falling asleep, suddenly
inhaling the whiff of flowers,
a scent that overtakes me from out of nowhere
would you rush to me again?
Knowing that I was seeing your body yellowing
in the coffin;

I was feeling your cold hand,
breathing in manicured roses
recognizing the smell of death.

Would you cradle me? This woman-form
of the child you knew;
would you whisper your laugh
in through the brittle walls that I
stare at? Put your arms across me
through the blankets I shake under?

If we could find each other;
recognize you, the dead
and I, the woman.
Could we find order?
Acceptance?

Find our fates and swallow the fact
that you aren't coming back.

Survive inside the offbeat millennium
you will never live through.

If I could go back -
I'd pull the tissue, and
chromosomes from my
body until I was stripped
done to the bones of
that little girl, I would
kiss your rosy cheek

(still warm)

and I would whisper:
go safely; go freely -
I will remember you.