Image from front cover of Veils, Halos and Shackles : International Poetry on the Oppression and Empowerment of Women
The widow’s true feelings belie her black veil,
for the eulogy prompts no tears or no wail.
She remembers his fury and his raised fist,
so his mouth and his hands will never be missed.
That sustained keen from the front of the church
comes from his mother–a black crone on her perch.
Sitting alone in the very front row,
she continues to sob and to moan and to crow.
Hers the only wet eyes, most likely because
she was the reason he was as he was.
No person comforted to ease her pain,
for all felt her loss was the wider world’s gain.
Later, at the grave site, as they commenced queueing
to pay last respects during the final viewing,
the single men agreed the corpse was a louse
and dreamed of becoming the widow’s next spouse.