Heather, Missed

I’d miss your witty conversation, if you’d ever bother to call.
I’d miss your comforting company, if you’d comfort me at all.
I’d miss your ideas and insights, if you’d ever stop to think.
I’d miss your sober celebrations, if you’d put down your drink.
I’d miss your gift to listen, if you’d ever let me speak.
I’d miss your self confidence, if you’d stop saying you’re a freak.
I’d miss your humble aspirations, if you’d turn the mirror away.
I’d miss your permanence and presence, if you’d ever stay.
I’d miss your praise and admiration, if you’d meant a word you said.
I’d miss your drive and determination, if only they weren’t dead.
I’d miss your joy and happiness, if ever did exist.
I’d miss your being with me, if only you’d be missed.

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A Leaf Floated Slowly

A leaf floated slowly, twisting, spiraling ever so slowly, dancing on the wind. Finally, it settled, next to the sole of a black shoe. A shoe, worn to match an ebon ensemble, worn, to signify sorrow. A guest, a friend, invited to mourn the passing of a life. The loss of a father.

The priest, the only one in white, intoned holy blessings to the Father, as the widow wept. The guests, some friends, others, fellow workers, stood in silent testimony to the departed one.

Only one stood apart. Alone in his grief, alone always, the son awaited the end of it all. He listened half-heartedly, as the holy man droned on, not hearing the words, or his mother’s grief. Lost in himself, he looked on, dry-eyed, as his father was painstakingly lowered into the waiting earth. He watched as the coffin disappeared forever into its final showcase.

It was beautiful; a pale white, embossed roses lining its rim, polished silver handles, a pair of doves carved into the top. It was magnificent. It had cost. The son smiled slowly, enjoying the irony. A bitter, cruel man, never very pretty, in soul or face, had wished to be buried in a work of art. No worry, they were rich. They knew it; with limos for every guest, tuxedos too, flowers by the hundred, expensive chapel, expensive priest. No, there was no want for luxury, but it would not buy a tear from the son. He felt no loss today, only joy.

The son moved to his mother, to comfort her in her anguish. The funeral ended, all left. The gravediggers set to work, covering another plot. Another grave, another stiff. Just one more satisfied customer.