haibun
A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
| Current Issue | Contents Page - This Issue | Editorial Staff | About This Journal |
| Submissions | Acceptance Criteria | Haibun Definitions | Articles | Archives | Search |

March 2008, vol 4 no 1

[return to Contents Page]

Adelaide Shaw

 

Widow's Weeds

She wobbles like a teenager in her first pair of high-heeled shoes.  What is he saying, the doctor?  "Coronary, occlusion, blockage..."  Something on his teeth.  A bit of tomato.  Eating a pizza probably when called to emergency.

On a chair now.  Head lowered.  Bright blue cornflowers dance before her eyes as if being blown by a prairie wind. A cup of water held in a strong, firm hand.  Unpainted square nails., No nonsense nails.  A thick-set nurse.  “Here.  Drink this.  Get some rest.”  A blanket thrust into her hands.

Directed towards the waiting room she lies on a couch. What if…?  Must call the children.  Must… must get a black dress.  She doesn’t have one.  Widow’s weeds. Her mother had one.  Her mother had been prepared.

Time has escaped her.  Marriage, children, retirement…  Where was she when all this happened?  Unseeing, unaware.  She wants to do it over from the beginning.  She would be prepared.  Be ready.  Learn how to live without her husband.  Have ready that black dress.

tumbleweed
across the desert sand
aimless in the wind