Last week my mother died in Texas.

Today in Pittsburgh, Eva and I and our two grown children Nicholas and Lea went to the Monongahela River. We carried a wreath Eva had woven of wisteria, roses, and lilies to a place where a willow leans over the water. I read a poem by Naomi Shihab Nye — Prayer in my Boot — and Nicholas threw the wreath into the water. We said goodbye to my mother.

I’m so grateful to have poetry to carry me.


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