Blue Truck
by Sharmagne Leland-St. John

She wished she had known
when she first drove
his truck down into the meadow
that the ground
would be soft and marshy
from the spring thaw

beneath the overgrowth
of native grasses,
the sunflower seedlings,
the newly opened buds
of bright red, yellow
and orange flowers
called Mexican hats

She wished she hadn't
gunned the motor so hard
that the wheels spun
until the shiny hubcaps sank
well below the surface
of the loamy earth.

She wished there was someone
she could call
to tell her what to do
the way he always had...

After he died she sold
the last of the goats
gave the cow to the neighbours
with the promise
of an occasional quart of milk

She had no need to
transport hay
or goats or anything
for that matter

So instead she filled
the bed of the stalled truck
with rich, dark potting soil
and planted buttercups
and sunflowers, violets,
nasturtiums, poppies,
his favourite kitchen herbs.

To her, they were the flowers
on a grave, he'd never know
because his children
had scattered his ashes
into the warm, anabatic wind
from the top of Mount Wheeler
on Dia de Los Muertes
last November.


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