Seven Years

by Andy Mitchell

We cross deep grass wondering why

it hasn’t been mowed this week of all weeks.

When we reach the grave we notice

the little tree beside the stone

has grown considerably. It wears seven

commemorative rings.

They’re not gold. They’re not measured

for their purity. They do the measuring.

They measure how old

the tree is, and, in this instance, how long

her mother’s been gone.

In another seven years the tree will shade

the formal marker with its name and dates,

recounting seven years of untold loss.



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