He insists on barking…

Feb morning

He insists on barking at the angels-
Their feathers rustling as they perch along the walls of the hall
and the edges of her room-
Watching as the communion of saints beat a path to her door.
He is alert to the folding of their wings as they settle
Unhurried
As death.

She told me that this life
Is hard to let go of.
Knowledge deep now,
As the blood and bone she created in me.
The body,
The heart
Wants to continue beating, breathing-
Though the spirit is chomping at the bit
To go home.

So they come and visit-
Those who have died, now returned to hold her hand along the way.
I feel that I should be the good hostess
As these venerable women were,
And bake a pound cake or
Offer sweet tea and lemonade.

They pass the time, laughing,
Talking of hunting trips
And rabbits loose in the yard.
Friends and relations gathered for her coronation,
As the small dog barks
At the heavenly host.