Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal

Life Goes On

Diane Elayne Dees

Months after the funeral, when the casserole dishes are stacked
like the vaults in St. Louis Cemeteries, and the letters and cards
have stopped coming--that is when everyone says "What a shame,
so youthful, so full of life, so sudden, so tragic."
"I went there once on business." "I liked to go for Mardi Gras."
The survivors wander down empty streets, looking for artifacts
of the imperfect, but treasured, past: a song, a taste, an anecdote--
anything that connects them to the beloved. The death is called a suicide
by some, a murder by others, but is officially recorded
as an accident, and accidents do happen, and life is for the living.
But the forgotten survivors do not count; too much is required
to meet their needs, and anyway, grieving is a private matter.
Time heals all wounds. Let the dead bury the dead.
Laissez le bons temps rouler.


Diane Elayne Dees has published her poetry, short fiction, creative nonfiction, and essays in a number of publications. A series of her poems is being read on "The Naturalist's Datebook," a segment of Martha Stewart Living Radio. Diane, who lives in Louisiana, has poetry forthcoming in Mobius, Out of Line, HazMat Review, The Eleventh Muse, The Binnacle, and the anthology, Hurricane Blues: How Katrina and Rita Ravaged a Nation.

© Diane Elayne Dees

Muscadine Lines: A Southern Journal ISSN 1554-8449, Copyright © 2004-2012