Here’s To The Widow Of Fifty

Here’s To The Widow Of Fifty

I stand here at your graveside in the rain
While people murmur comfort in my ears
Because, my husband, we’ll not meet again
So I must hide my joy behind false tears.

‘Earth to earth’ … I hear the priest intone,
And I remember how you dragged me out
Into the garden, naked to the bone,
And broke my front teeth with a vicious clout.

‘Ashes to ashes’ … like my youthful dreams
Of love and marriage – all those foolish things.
You smashed them all, destroyed my self-esteem,
Imprisoned me within a wedding ring.

‘Dust to dust’ … you reach your resting place.
No more I’ll feel you fumbling my flesh
With sweaty hands, or see your stubbled face
Above me in the bed. Life starts afresh.

I stand here at your graveside in the rain,
Radiant within, though outwardly composed,
And scatter on your coffin all my pain.
The sign is made, the prayer-book firmly closed.

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