Fog hems the ocher backwater
like hoar frost on Georgia clay —
as the lodestar fades
against the breaking of a wailing sky,
rare winter lightning
flashes against a sea of granite
flags — the broken rear guard.

We are instant saints, lifting mother’s
ornate box — our scuffling boots
mimic the sound of dragging a mime
to the cadence of father’s walking stick,
its distant tapping calling her home —

a moment too solemn, too discreet.

Then suddenly a red dog appears
running wildly between tombstones,
its body pulsing to the rhythm
of its sagging tongue, and a girl
no more than seven kneels
with a glass of water, smiling
as the irreverent dog drinks loudly.

©2023 Glenn Lyvers