30 July 2006

Cleaning out the drawers...

Today I made ashes
of his last morning.

I put a flame
to the clothes
I'd bundled in red wool,
and tucked away
in the bottom drawer of his dresser.

In a black drum
I set fire to blood
and betadine,
and cotton jersey, scarred
from hurried scissors.

I added fresh sage and tobacco.
And I stood in the smoke.


20 comments:

Sandy said...

Your illo is exactly how I pictured you doing this act of reverence and your poem is very telling for those who wish to read between the lines.

As the smoke poured over you, you were cleansed of the morning that changed your life. Not that you will ever forget but that you will always remember yet you have put a close to it. It's final, finished, done.

You sanctified the memory of his last day on this earth, the things that touched his body for the last time, and his life which was poured out.

I know our ancestors were there sharing in this most sacred ceremony as was he and they honor you for it.

Honoring him, you honor yourself.

Love,

Sandy

Courtney said...

beautiful and touching.

Rrramone said...

Wow. I don't know the story, but I totally get the feeling. And the reverence you had for whomever this was about. Good for you for taking care of yourself in such a loving and powerful way.

Jason said...

This was very moving. I like it. I could feel the emotion behind it. I wish I could do my work like that some time. Well done.

Da Ghost Prod said...

So much meanings inthis poetic word and illo, it's tuch me inside, this is a great, great words-illo-emotion. I love ;)
Thank you for your comment and really pleased to know you...

ValGalArt said...

exquisite pieces of pain... it showered me with feelings and I loved it!

Within Without said...

This post is filled with depth and beauty and sadness and great colour, all at once.

Your illustrations are gorgeous and bright. I don't know the story either but this touched me.

Thanks. Got here from Andrea's blog and glad I did. I hope the smoke (of the sweetgrass?) truly did help cleanse.

carla said...

This is so powerful, and although I don't know its significance to you, I sense it is very true. Thank you for sharing this.

constance said...

A very beautiful poem :) and the expression on the face shows a lot....

Borut said...

Agree with Sandy! Recapitulation. Deep. Final.

scribblesk said...

Beautifully tender and heartrending, certain to truly minister to those who have also experienced tragedy.

Twisselman said...

A very personal and very moving piece. Peace to you and your memories.

Ian T. said...

A powerful and poignant piece that captures (and communicates) a mood perfectly. Best wishes, Ian T.

tekentijger said...

Very touching. It gave me goose pimples...

The Unknown said...

Love

Penny said...

Cryptic for a new reader, but touching just the same.

genesse said...

wow. These are very well-written, beautifully strong words.

atomicvelvetsigh said...

its amazing how the feeling of letting go of someone deared, cleaning up the remnants of what's left behind both materially and emotionally that make us create beauty in it. either thru the act of 'cleaning' or thru words and art, just like what you did.

thanks for linking this beautiful post to your comment on my blog!

tsduff said...

I was first drawn to your blog by this post... or perhaps one without an illustration with it... I don't see my comment but still I remember it vividly. I lost my husband April 15, 2004, and your loss mirrored my feelings at the time. hugs - and truly you put into words the loss so keenly felt. You are so multi-talented. Thank you for sharing these with us.

Catnapping said...

i remember your comment tsfuff. i think it was to my poetry blog (before i started to consolidate). it might have been this poem, but without the image.

when i think about the more keenly felt emotions, it reminds me just how connected we all are: loss, love, compassion...(oyp, that sounds trite...cliché but you know what i mean.