and the appetizers were ordered 

then the phone rang

and she saw me crying

then the empty seats were vacated without warning

and the drive back to the hospital was fragile and silent

then I was both passenger and driver for 13 minutes 7 kilometres

and the parking lot was empty

then memories began flooding back in

and the halls slid past me in cautious waves

then my mom was huddled near the floor

and my sister said he’s gone

then my spouse anchored her hand between my shoulder blades






. . .

4 responses to “2015”

  1. Lovely, poignant experience of that day, those minutes, those kilometers and those words, “he’s gone.”

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Oh my. “and then”
    And “then” becomes now in this poem. The juxtaposition of opposites in roles, time, and place – so interesting and thoughtful and human.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow.
    I read this twice. A few lines stood out to me. Comparing the walls to waves – almost a metaphor of the vastness of grief. How it can roll you around. The use of the word anchor and specifying between your shoulder blades moves that metaphor along (intentional or not).
    There is a lot between the lines that I naturally wanted to know, but that’s not the point. It’s the humanization of grief.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Chris J Cluff Avatar
      Chris J Cluff

      Pieces of that night keep coming back to me. Waves. Layers. Lots of anchors that have not yet settled to the bottom. Grief yes, but something else too. Memory. Story. Surprise. My sisters bravery. And the ridiculousness guilt of leaving the resto without telling the server why.

      Liked by 1 person

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