In the Midst of Life, Death
Another friend, gone.
She took her pocket of secrets,
her shaky hands, unsteady legs.
Alone, afraid, she did not call
us back after her hospitalization.
Depression deep, she wrote long
wavering letters that grew harder
to read till that last day, she strung
a rope high in her garage.
A concerned neighbor found the
scribbles on her kitchen counter,
called the police, who found her body.
Artist, therapist, cornerstone
in her community. Growing poor
and paranoid, estranged from family,
don’t tell anyone, she whispered.
We knew different parts of her story.
Her brother, at the funeral, knew little.
The big burn she left. The heart we felt.
A smile that shined. Art in her studio,
the gallery openings, yet lack of success.
The children she nurtured well
will miss her grandmother years,
the cookies warm in her kitchen.
The stages of grief tumble, each
death reminds us of other deaths,
with no influence to change
a course, to accept such a choice,
no parallel path. Never an option
to bargain another soul for hers.
Julene Tripp Weaver is a psychotherapist and writer in Seattle. She has a chapbook and two full size poetry books. Her most recent book,truth be bold—Serenading Life & Death in the Age of AIDS, (Finishing Line Press), was a finalist for a Lambda Literary Award, and won theBisexual Book Award(2017). Julene worked for 21 years in AIDS services. She is widely published in journals and anthologies. A few online sites include: Riverbabble, River & South Review, The Seattle Review of Books, HIV Here & Now, Mad Swirl, Writing in a Woman's Voice, and in the Stonewall Legacy Anthology. Find her online at www.julenetrippweaver.com, on Twitter @trippweavepoet, on Instagram @julenet.weaver
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.