Passages I by Michael K. Gause
Her face has already lost
the memories we have of her.
But we are not easily discarded, and
I will not turn away.
The mystery of age and illness envelopes my breath
and the others. It reaches out from
the Evolving One who once knew human name. Now we think talisman,
saint, clocks unwinding.
My childish voice finds her
drifting into the land left to fear thereafter
“Look for my eyes.”
She tries to focus through the years between us
as I lean closer.
Her ears recall sorrow and secret.
But there are no words
unknown to the dying,
and we are but the babbling prophesy of our own eclipse.
I have decided to say
no incantation nor pray
for time to wrench back her marbled trunk
into the sapling child of midnight laughing.
For at dusk she will choose old black hymns,
sung in solitude,
and beg our memory to sleep.