A Cortége of Daughters

Posted on Oct 9, 2013 | Comments Off on A Cortége of Daughters

A quite ordinary funeral the corpse
Unknown to the priest. The twety-third psalm
The readings by serious businessmen
One who nearly tripped on the unnacustomed pew
The kneelers and the sitters like sheep and goats.

But by some prior determination a row
Of daughters and daughters-in-law rose
To act as pallbearers instead of men
All of even height and beautiful
One wore in her hair a black and white striped bow.

And in the midst of their queenliness
One in dark flowered silk, the corpse
Had become a man before they reached porch
So loved he his own dark barge
Which their slow moving steps rowed
As a dark lake is sometimes surrounded by irises.


Elizabeth Smither