After my father died,
I went to mass with my mother
to partake in her daily rituals,
be closer to her.
She still sat in the same pew,
one we filled as a family years ago.
Her leather bound missal
on the slot in front of her.
Photos slid from pages,
laminated faces smiled at me,
bookmarking her favourite psalms.
Her glass rosary beads knotted around her fingers
she caressed each bead in prayer.
Soothed by her lisping whispers
I watched her pray,
as her beads tinkled
against the polished pew.
Her eyes closed,
face raised in adoration
to some uncharted world beyond,
I saw my father walking free,
reunited with the smiling faces.
Tears traced the lines of her powdered face
and my tears silently trickled too.
Comforted by her devotion,
credence in decades of the rosary,
the mysteries became tangible.
Like a cord connecting us,
the chain on her beads,
linked me to the afterlife,
a place I could not readily accept
My mother is closer now,
the cord of life, so strong.
My father’s wish
uniting us from beyond.