I took the hand of the dead man’s wife
(She buried him today).
Her limp grip echoed the years of her life
Grown flaccid with soft decay.
She had no tears in clouded eyes,
No sobs, no heaves, no pain.
She had no sense of what death implies
Within its amber stain.
I said, “I’m sorry.” She said, “You’re kind.”
I poured myself some rye.
And as I drifted through my mind
She wandered off to die.