Eardsley, Herefordshire, England 2011 © bronwyn angela white

We are the women in the graveyard

bringing embalming things—spices and oils

or brushes and secateurs

to tidy the graves of others

while we wait,

plastic bags to take away dead flowers

our new bouquets



Patient for the grief to have its day, become familiar

the unexpected tugs of might-have-been

delightful memories mixed with the mundane


Binding our hopes together in the shroud

that wraps our loss


Waiting for life—as we know it does—

to go on

we listen to his mother reminisce:

he was a lovely child

so hungry always, though—for stories, fairness:

so passionate for one so young!


We hear and tell our versions of a life:

darling child

enthralling friend

bastard heir to a lost kingdom.



We are the women in the graveyard

waiting for resurrection


meanwhile, love and duty get us through

so we pull at weeds and ask,

do you remember?



And we’ll be on the beach

at Galilee

  cooking breakfast.

Kapiti Coast 2011 © bronwyn angela white