With aging photos, phone calls planning dinner,
with the same story of the same diner pancakes
on countless Sundays that you never finished, but
were allowed to order anyway.
With your great aunt in the hospital hallway
being selfish as usual, with your father in the
hospital hallway with circles under his eyes
the size of dinner plates, dirt in the brim of
his baseball cap, sipping coffee and watching
his father die.
You grieve him with the counting of his breath
like the anticipation between lightning and thunder,
with laughter you managed to scrape from the very
bottom of your lungs.
With yoga, with a glass of milk, with quick,
quiet crying in the cereal aisle of the supermarket.
You line up sympathy cards like paper trinkets
on the mantel, and you grieve because they grieve for you.
You grieve without sadness too, the first time you’re able
to say you lost him without hunching your shoulders.
With every look at your rounding belly,
the shape of some new world without him in it
except he is, in the still unknown face of your son.
Over coffee, over breakfast, over a good book,
watching your favorite television show, paying
for an ice cream, kissing your husband goodnight,
brushing your hair.
You grieve him in any way, in every way, in light and dark,