I feel the need to preface this poem. It doesn’t feel finished to me. It’s not everything I want to say on this topic. But it’s a start. I have left it with Sincerity and A. for our writing group, and they’ll give me their comments/suggestions in a couple of weeks. Until then, this is it. Any feedback fellow poets or critical readers want to offer is much appreciated.
My grandmother’s ghost had come
to reside in her body long before
she was declared dead.
Blind, mute, beyond the years
of sliding backward through her life:
answering to Rodney, the nickname given
by her jazz-bandmates; goosing Santa
at the nursing home Christmas party;
calling me by my mother’s name.
When the time came, she refused
to eat—to be fed—and withered
into her pillow three days later.
She found a way to slip free
of the body that imprisoned her,
Houdini-style, a final act of will.