On the Death of Beth Meacham’s Father

And all the “ifs” are broken, if he’d been
someone you could have loved, you could have grieved.
And that would hurt so much — if all these years
he’d been someone to lose, how many tears?
As well as him, you’ve lost that “never was”,
that “if” you should have had, and now “because”
and blame and guilt and sadness all are stirred
into the cup of grief, with bitter words.
It’s good to know he’s gone beyond the pain
no one should suffer that, and to no gain.
So death’s a mercy, death brings him surcease
he’s gone, and you are left, he has found peace.
But when a parent dies who’s not a friend
there’s strange conflicted sorrow, in the end.

29th April 2011