On the Anniversary of my Death
by David Adès

In death as in life, questions hover,
asked and unasked, never fully answered.
To think and speak of this now

is to meet superstition – is to think
and speak, not to invoke. Who
will be left to tenderly place stones

at my grave, to shed tears,
to tend to my terrible loneliness,
to recite kaddish for me?

Who will push aside every other insistent voice
to stand or sit with me in silence,
to feel now my greater absence?

Who, knowing something of the man
I was – my life’s blessings, my life’s mistakes —
will think ‘Here lies a man who did his best’?

Who will be a kindness to my memory?
Who will come with generosity,
with open heart,

with the blessings of their love
straining to reach across the great divide?
Whose heart will I seek with mute gratitude?

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