Hands – Eulogies 2014


when dad died they
clothed him for funeral

his hands so beautiful
crossed over his chest
they were the only thing

talking of him to me

I took a picture my
relatives anger rose
I could not avoid that

I haven’t seen it once

that picture it’s hiding
away to be gazed at on
a day when I’ll accept

distance or enjoy
closeness where
will my hands

go when I die

not on my chest
nor on my belly
for that short

time of the viewing
a sense of lack

of no more breath

a heaviness not favoring
digestion nor straight aside
as a soldier of whose army

2014-06-24 20.12.50




11 responses »

  1. Maybe you should just view it, the relatives be damned.. and their outrage can go to hell…
    It is as unreasonable as the opinion that capturing an image captures their soul. What is a memory for? What is an image for? if not to reinforce that which is not around any more. People will always be silly, but the fear of their disapproval does not give us anything but loss.


    • Hi Tejaswi and thank you for your comment. People respond to the level of understanding they are at. Italians are very traditional and of catholic formation, so deaths, funerals and such are to the majority a formality and a “holy” thing, not a bridge to a deeper understanding. I respect people stands, when they just don’t get it, even if it hurts. Meanwhile I process their distance and my dead father closeness. You mention capturing the soul of a person with a photograph… when I lived in Mexico by the Tarahumara people they believed that and it was scary and painful for some of them to have a picture taken… but they were the sweetest people ever… yet we are all ignorant about so many things. One day, hopefully, we’ll be able to laugh about all of this. Best to you, glad for your reply!

      Liked by 2 people

      • Thank you Anna, yes, you are right, we are ignorant at times.. but you are also right that we can laugh about those things some day, even if it is sometimes tinged with sadness…

        Take care, it was good to read your reply.. thank you for replying.. best to you too..

        Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you Chagall! I like the sequence in this poem: statement, discovery of beauty in a painful event, others not understanding the revelation, emotional earthquakes and then the questioning of oneself with some humor and awareness. I usually don’t analyze my poems this way but this one has a precise architecture. I’m very grateful you did enjoy it…

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Dear Ana, Your poem resonates the elegy of mourning in such a remarkable way. I have witnessed so many funerals but till now I haven’t had your thoughts and that makes you a wonderful poet. Anand Bose from Kerala

    Liked by 2 people

  3. Your poem moves my heart. Death and the way it speaks back into life is so personal. My dad died a number of years ago and my sister and I did something others thought was ‘weird’, too. We kissed our dad’s hair as he lay quietly before us in death. It was a spontaneous action we did together without prior thought or discussion yet stunned others. For us, it was like a loving goodbye and returned to us a childhood comfort that we still share at times when we speak fondly of our father’s life and its effect on us as daughters and sisters. I am sad for your loss, but glad for how you captured a moment of his life and hugged it to yours. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yours is a wonderful, well depicted, story. Thank you for sharing it with me and others here. Mourning is very personal but when we open up about it there’s this golden light that ties us all together who want to pitch in their little bits of understanding on trespassing. Sending a hug to you and your sister, I love the line about the childhood comfort. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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