song for the dead
Upsadaisy. From hobby-horse to hearse over the cobblestones.
It drizzled when grandmother was buried.
In September her daughter scrubs the grave though no one
ever comes by. My knees are ruined, she muses. So many
wasted years. If I ever get Alzheimer’s, give me a jab. Or:
poor old granny was afraid the rabbits would nibble at her toes
in the cemetery. When my time comes, I’m going to let myself be
cremated. Mr Death’s a gourmet underground.
In the mist above the graves: a little room at her house. Grey
dove stares at the tube, doesn’t recognise her. ‘I only get twenty
degrees and the TV guide offers only lousy programmes. You’re
not sleeping with that man from downstairs, are you? How could you? He’s
a thief, I hide my money.’
The smell of burning potato leaves. Mum says goodbye
to the swans. The skies are heavy, the mud sucks. Arthritis
in the shoulder. Quickly back to the house.
A radio drama in the living room. Nobody listens.
The hit parade. Anti-wrinkle cream. And a rosary in the drawer.