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From Ashes to Ashes, Through Water and Fire

A poem

Published on:
May 11, 2019
Read time:
1 min.
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Your body, Mom,
            was burned in a shock
                        of red and yellow,
swept into piles,
            and entombed in tin.
                        There I held you again.

What's left of you
            I carefully placed,
                        leaning over the edge
of the steep
            walkway overlooking
                        the falls. 

What’s left of you:
            softly sprinkled,
                        then rushing
down in
            bubbling, moving
                        water.

From here,
            looking down,
                        you are caught
on rocks,
            and transformed in
                        foam.

Mom, will God sweep your
            scattered bits and,
                        with his gentle fingers,
piece each atom together?
            Will he know where you
                        live now, with no gravestone?

You loved this
            churning spot.
                        Mom, I cannot
remain here
            forever, but
                        you will—until that day.

Lisa Cooper
Lisa Cooper has a BA in literature and an MA in religion. She lives in Ithaca, NY with her family, and works as a preschool teacher. She is the editor of The Evangel, and at Just and Sinner Publications. And yes, she is old enough to have a six year old. Follow her on Twitter for theology, funny things her kids say, and upcoming writing projects at @LaLaLisaCooper.

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