Hard Work

Written by: Carrie Richards

There is laughter to comfort, the old house again
Debate filters in, from the group in the kitchen
The four walls seem to juggle between two strong opinions
Now the girls against boys, with quite different versions
They shuffle their cards and argue who won,
They are laughing, and shouting, in a light masquerade...

Dipping crackers and chips in the onion laced cream
smacking their lips, and drinking their cokes
then betting a few of the red plastic discs,
that will ante this round 
...I listen with pleasure, holding on to this sound...

   This laughter, is long overdue,.......
                     Let us cling to the mood...

Now it's a new game they find,
Monopoly, perhaps? 
No, charades it will be...as I let up the shade
to watch the evening turn umber and rust,
as earth swallows dusk, which is fading away

From my window, I am hoping to see 
geese flying back from their warm winter homes
All seems normal, routine, once again

Winter near gone and a new spring begins
How will it be now, this journey, untried,?
As we hide, wearing smiles, wearing pride on our sleeves
Smiles, numbed with grief, that still hides deep inside 

Warm days are arriving......and there is talk on the hill 
where tall pines trees are whispering, 
reminding the creek, and the ash trees are greening
and katydids will call out condolences in the dark

Soon again, when the lark sings,  wet grass will need tending
stacks of shutters will need painting,
and snow will yet need to be pushed aside

How will they cope..?
He's not here to do it...but somehow we hope
they will wade their way through it..

But for now , at a kitchen table
for brief moments, they are able
to laugh, argue...while someone declares "I won"..

Joy is hard work too...but it needs to be done