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Each Morning of Mourning

By: Renee Cronley


It’s easy to forget we live in death’s shadow

with light tracing promises into the days ahead.

        Like when the summer sun melted our hands

               together as we leapt into the cool drink.

        Like when the winter fire toasted our toes

               together as we hiked through frosty trails.

        Like when the unseen glow of body heat warmed us

               together in our bed.


        We discarded beliefs

        built our lives around reason

        sure that the only patterns seen in life

        were those imagined after staring too long.

So why do I visit her grave so often?

Where darkness and nothingness swallow her,

but not my nonsensical idea of her being cold

with us separated only by six feet of dirt.

I know she was laid to rest,

but she rises again and again in my mind

as if my thoughts had secretly formed the notion

that the world was built to have her in it

and hid that knowledge from me until after she was gone.

This love is not dying a natural death,

maybe because I can’t replenish it.

I’m thinking in fast forward,

searching for meaning everywhere,

even in the polished beads and religious formulae

I once rejected as skeletons of grand stories

coded in myths, proverbs, and parables

I pray manifests on her epitaph

so I can read our epic on her granite tome—

a scrawled signature—

proof she was written into

a world that has suddenly gone blank.

Every morning I return to her

under the vast indifferent sky.

The sun is still there—

we always knew the light to be real.

It’s how I bear standing alone

with the uncomfortable truth

of what forever means.

About the Author

Renee Cronley is a writer and nurse from Manitoba. She studied Psychology and English at Brandon University, and Nursing at Assiniboine Community College. Her work appears in Chestnut Review, PRISM international, Off Topic, Love Letters to Poe,, Weird Little Worlds, ParABnormal Magazine, Black Spot Books, and several other anthologies and literary magazines.

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