The Sexton in a Rebuilding Year
Itís a Wednesday funeral, raining up on noon.
The preacher and just two mourning guests
plus the Sexton inching in from the periphery
make it a fourplex affair. A minute into the ritual,
the daughter of the deceased asks: can they
dispense with what the planned service
and drink coffees together at the bakery
down the way? Eat a kruller or a bear claw,
talk like normal people talking? They can,
so they do. The preacher and the daughterís husband,
are both Green Bay Packers fans. Similar jackets.
They speculate on next seasonís chances,
still missing their saint, Bret Favre, (retired),
facing a rebuilding year. Commiserating.
The Sexton asks the deceasedís daughter:
what would she most miss about her mother?
She has an answer but seems half elsewhere.
He expresses condolences. This side-trip
is a change of pace, but soon the Sexton
feels heís letting daylight burn away.
He takes his leave. He sets the sod in place,
before more rain permeates the grave.
Sometimes almost no one comes.
You feel pressed to shift, to improvise.

Todd Mercer

If you have any thoughts on this poem, Todd Mercer would be pleased to hear them.