The Last Day

Tomorrow’s the day
For quietly honouring your dying
Today I’m cocooned
In the last day of your living
Oh it was a good day
A day of shared laughter – loving – nurturing
Five years ago and yet
It still plays perfectly
In the movie theatre of my mind
You were unwell
Had a doctor’s appointment for the following day
Nonetheless you were witty and playful
Me working in the study
You working in the bedroom
Less than a dozen steps apart
You’d not have needed to raise your voice
And yet you Skyped me
Held Big Ted in front of the screen
“We’re poorly and we’re thirsty”
Then that cheeky grin
The breath leaves my body as I remember
How your eyes sparkled
We had a cuppa
Watched an episode of Poirot
Then you had a sleep
I was concerned because
You who loved your food
Had eaten very little over the last few weeks
I asked if there was anything you fancied
I finally tempted you with a little grilled King George whiting
A couple of boiled chat potatoes
There was broccoli too but you said
“It’s mean to make a sick person eat vegetables”
You didn’t want wine so we had San Pellegrino water
In crystal wine glasses
You gave me a hug
Told me how much you’d enjoyed your dinner
Then wandered back to bed
I sat and read for a couple of hours
Before going to bed
I climbed in
Gave you a kiss and a cuddle
Then realised the overhead light was still on
Neither of us wanted to get up
Your suggestion cracked me up
“I could chuck Big Ted at the light switch
Maybe he can turn it off on his way past”
I ruffled your hair and said
“You’re a funny little fucker aren’t you”
I stumbled out of bed
Turned the light out
Crawled back in
Still laughing so much the bed was shaking
I fell asleep chuckling
The next thing I remember…
That’s tomorrow’s story
Today is for honouring
Our lovely last day

Tricia 13/7/2014

► 2:23► 2:23

About triciabertram

I have written all my life. Writing helps me to make sense of a world I often don’t understand. Poetry is my supreme solace, closely followed by literature and music. When my son ended his life in 1999 I embarked on the most difficult journey of my life, my grief journey. To survive in this unknown, harsh landscape I had to write. It was for me, the only way I could even begin to move forward. Then in 2009 my darling husband died suddenly and so my journey continues. I write about other issues but because of my life experience, grief and death are continuing themes in my writing life. In our culture I believe there is a fear of death, an inability to accept the inevitability of our mortality, and this creates enormous difficulties for the bereaved and those around them. I have begun this blog in the hope I will create a small ripple in the pond of fear that is currently drowning the reality of death and grief. I will continue to skim the stones of my truth, watch them bounce, and see how many ripples I can make.

Posted on July 13, 2014, in Poems and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 24 Comments.

  1. Elizabeth Anni Leppin

    Beautiful Tricia xxx

  2. Beautiful Tricia…I so very much do not want to hear the next instalment. As if not hearing makes it disappear and enables this beautiful friendship to continue undisturbed. And yet..

    I’m sorry x

    • My dear Pooky, this year there shall be no ‘next instalment’. I too feel the need to just focus on ‘this beautiful friendship’. I wanted to do something special for the fifth anniversary and what could be more special than celebrating the last day of a wonderful life.
      Thank you my dear friend. xx

      • No way could be more special… By not writing a further installment I think you leave this beautiful day open ended, to be enjoyed, celebrated and relived forever.

        Thinking of you xxx

  3. It is heartbreaking. It sounds like you had a good day though. So many are denied even that.

  4. Beautiful Tricia, just beautiful. There is an inexplicable “unfairness” in life. Love you very much ❤️ Xxx

    • Thank you my dear, Christine. I’ve found this anniversary particularly difficult. It certainly doesn’t get easier in my experience. I love you my precious friend and am so grateful you are part of my life. xx <3.

  5. Tricia, you are teaching me so much about coping with grief – a heartfelt thankyou. Now I understand that I can choose my memories of my father.

    • Dear Peter, your comment means so much to me. Grief is such an individual, and at times consuming experience, one I’m sorry you are living. I often wonder if my life now has any worth or meaning. Your words give me a sense that I’m still making a difference. Thank you my friend. xx

  6. I cant find the words to express just how moved I am. It’s wonderfull
    To have so many wonderful memories to draw have a beautiful ability in putting words to creatively express part of your soul..

    • Thank you my darling Polly, for your words and for always being there, ready and willing to listen to the happy and the sad memories. I’m so lucky you’re my sister. Love you. ❤ xx

  7. This gave me the chills, Tricia, and now I’m sitting here, fingers to keys, so touched by the beauty and musicality of your words.

    What a glorious day it must have been.

    With much heart,

    • Oh Dani, it was the most precious of days. We will all have a ‘last day’; I’m so grateful my husband’s was so special.

      Thank you for your lovely comment.

      Take care

  8. So very touching – beautiful writing once again.

  9. Unbelievable, heart-wrenching, beautiful, and real. Thank you for sharing this poem and this intimate, special day. Hugs.

  10. This brings it all to the crest and leaves us hanging, but knowing what is to come, it takes the breath away, Tricia. I am sorry that I haven’t been getting your posts. Tonight I thought I’d just check in on you and I find you’ve been posting for some time. I have catching up to do, which I’ll do slowly. I don’t like to “binge read” anything with this much tenderness. I’m not in a race. 🙂 I’m in awe of your ability to recount this last day and capture both the ordinary and extraordinary all in one. I hope your hardest days are behind you. That seems an appropriate wish for someone with such a record of deep loss. oxo

    • Dear Debra,
      I’ve just responded to your post where you shared your dad’s illness. I don’t know if I hit the right button so please let me know if you don’t get it. It was so good to hear from you.

      Writing The Last Day, was in my heart, a gift to Rod. Sometimes I think my hardest days are behind me and then I experience a day when I’m raw and broken as if they have just died. For me, grief has no destination, it’s a constant journey.

      I hope you are well. Big hug. xx

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