First let me say, I’m not a big poetry fan. I don’t know how many syllables or words should go on each line of a poem. I can’t name one Pulitzer Prize winner for poetry. I read a poem every now and then, but nothing that would inspire me to say to other people, “You’ve GOT to read this!” The only exception to this, until now, was Ray Carver’s poem, “Happiness.” I’ve pulled it out every couple of months for many years, and smiled every time I’ve read it. But this month, an acquaintance wrote the poem below, which I think rivals Carver’s work. The author of the poem is Teri Foltz. Teri is a college instructor, pint-size-play author, and stand-up comedienne. She is compiling a bunch of her poems into a book of poetry. I loved this one, and I hope you enjoy it half as much as I do. I will be pulling this one out for many years to come, just like Carver’s. :
Teri Foltz’s poem:
When the end was gaining ground,
She asked for the Death Midwife.
At 98, she had outlived everyone,
Even her last born son.
No one was left to usher her over the threshold.
So the Death Doula came.
To hold her hand, stroke her hair
And tuck the covers all around her
As if she were, again, a little child.
And when her eyes were nearly closed
And her breath too soft to hear ,
The Doula played the soundtrack of her life.
While Benny Goodman’s band played Stardust,
Miriam danced out the door
Where her limo awaited.