For Breanne, 1979-1999

They buried you because they had to bury you.
And maybe, in the first years,
they brought  you white roses, peonies, carnations,
because they were wild and elegant
and would dry up in the heat
and fall apart and die
as you did
early and out of season.  But it has been seventeen years
and it seems a decade has passed
since the last family visit.  I don’t know
why I’ve come. I’ve brought nothing for you
and can think of nothing to do for you,
except to leave this plot as it is,
grass growing in clumps and bunches above the casket
yellow hardened blades of grass slashing
their way through the cracks and red bricks
and isn’t it strange where grass chooses to grow?
Grass and weeds.  And I let them be.
Because they are what you left behind,
your living memorial.
They are the lives that thrive, where other lives have not.

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