Poem for my daughter on her birthday


I take a stiff bristled brush
to scrub the green
from the gold letters of your name,

take the miniature fence down,
cut the grass back to an acceptable length.
I remove the bird bath,

the terracotta dish of daffodils,
the tiny Buddha statue.
The tall, plastic plant holder I lift out,

from where it’s half buried to keep it upright
and look down into the hole it leaves.
Something has laid white pearl eggs

in the dark. I would reach my hand
down into the earth and fish further,
worm it right down through the clay

until I’m up to the shoulder
and feathering a fingertip touch
to the corner of your coffin,

feeling for the smooth round
of the edge. It would be like holding your hand,
reassuringly. I’m still here, I’d say,

don’t worry, I love you,
you are not forgotten.

3 thoughts on “Poem for my daughter on her birthday

  1. rachelfitz

    This is so moving and such a perfect expression of the yearning that will always be there for our lost little ones. I’m in awe of your ability to so accurately pinpoint the feelings and express them so evocatively… though I guess that is what poetry is all about!
    Thank you so much for sharing and putting into words what most of us don’t have the skill or ability to do x x


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