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Last Dance

“The wood feels so cold,” she thinks, Running her hand along the freshly, waxed surface, “And his tie is not straight.” Her trembling fingers instinctually reach in, Repositioning the ruffled fabric, “There, that’s better,” she smiles, Leaving her palm resting on his motionless chest, For a moment she thinks she sees him smile too, He had such a handsome smile, But no, his painted lips remain shut, And she realizes they’ll never kiss her again, “Who am I going to dance with now?” she sighs, She closes her eyes, afraid the memories have faded, but they are still there, She can feel his arms wrapped around hers, As they gently twirl together to “In The Mood,” Just as they did on their wedding day, Unfortunately, her eyes betray her when they open, She sees him again now laying so still, “No dancing today,” she frowns, She knows the only music she’ll hear soon, Will be a bugle’s lonely testimony, “Not yet, not yet,” she whispers, “I’m not ready to say good-bye.” Tears waltz at first down her cheek, Then quicken to a foxtrot, And her broken heart drum pounds out of rhythm, As she crescendos into an aria of sobs, He had passed so quietly, Just like the humble man he was, Watching Dan Rather, Sipping his evening tea, While she was in the kitchen, Washing the dinner dishes, “Do you want a lemon bar?” She had called, But there had only been silence, No eager response for that tasty treat he so loved, She found him in his recliner, Saucer and cup still in hand, He hadn’t suffered just drifted off, Now here they are, Once last dance together as man and wife, Before the curtain closes ending their show, She was the matriarch of the family, Sensible, strict, and strong, No one needed to see the pain she really was in, Only she knew where she had gotten her strength, It was from being his wife, For the first time in her life She finds herself without a partner, “The service was so nice,” she thinks aloud, “Everyone said such kind words about you.” Glancing out the window, She sees cars lining up behind the soon-to-be-filled hearse, She wipes her eyes, “I wasn’t ready to be left alone on this dance floor.” She leans over and kisses his forehead, “Good-bye, my love,” she smiles, “Wait for me on the other side, So we can continue our dance for eternity.” She runs her hand over the tear-stained surface, “The wood still feels so cold,” she says, Then turns and walks out the door

Copyright © | Year Posted 2005

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