Death’s been good
Death has been good to my neighbors.
I watched as they pulled their new Jag,
it’s gleaming black lacquer skin, out of the drive.
I notice the chill in the winter’s sun,
a thaw off the rear defrost
clearing horizontal slats on the back window.
They own the funeral home on Main Street
where I went to pay my respects to Sophia’s relatives.
The police managed the lines around the block:
they form that way when they die young.
Breast cancer took her at forty-one.
I remember the first time Stacy, her beautiful sister,
introduced us on Palisades Avenue.
Sophia looked stunning.
I never fully understood why I felt that way.
I remember working with her in the art department
at Zip-Five books.
I felt awkward when she was passed over for a position offered to me,
the art director’s job I didn’t deserve nor take.
Life can be cruel that way.
I was hoping she might have been offered the position after I left.
I don’t think that happens when your boss is sexist.
I recall the time she came over with her husband.
We all were shocked after her daughter fell and bit her lip.
Sophia was casual, holding the blood-drenched napkin
on her daughter’s mouth as she stopped the crying.
Death already very confusing. Is more so when premature.
I never properly processed what happened.
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