The Space In-Between

Written by: Bernadette Langer

I watched him gag on words 
as each syllable became garbled.

Like the images 
floating in faraway corners 
of eyes, filled with unshed tears;

And every so often, there would be a glimmer 
of a smile, a little lost shadow, 
that joyfully danced across the emptiness,
as if just awoken from a dream.

It was so hard to watch darkness then, 
stagger forward to
envelop him, over and over.

For he was once intellectually vibrant,
stuffed full of life...
as teddy bear gentlemen ought to be;

Until I realized sadly, that all too soon 
the dense white cotton stuffing-- 
would be all that remained.

From the inside out, 
poking resolutely-- 
through all the in-between spaces;

Leaving his body void of nothing-- 
but memory 
and all its beloved--