Elizabeth Padillo Olesen
Saying Goodbye In A Funeral - Poem by Elizabeth Padillo Olesen
I attended the funeral of your dear one.
I heard your loud sobbing and screaming
As the coffin of your deceased husband
was carried out from the church aisle.
The black limousine was waiting outside
The caretaker looked at his watch
Each one picked up a white rose and
laid it on the coffin of your dear one.
Still the undertaker looked at you and waited;
You held on to the coffin and would not
Let the limousine drive off your husband-
to the burning heat of the crematorium.
The undertaker started the engine
You stood still sobbing, speaking and moaning
You drowned your heart in anguish so deep
But the funeral service should be culminated.
And the coffin was taken away by that black limousine
With a weak voice, you called, “Please come back”.
And you continued to sob without let up
The sting of death crushed your heart.
And there you stood with the presence
and comfort of your family and friends
No longer alone or bereft in the world
You were surrounded by those who wept
with you, who stood beside you,
waiting when your anguish could subside.
Funeral of Frannie’s husband, September 5,2015
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