I hesitate. When do I start to grieve
What’s inevitable? My grandpa must
Lingers, false-toothless, since grandma believed
Them useless since he’d soon return to dust
We converge. A funeral procession
For the still-living. We converge, although
Instead of days, he has weeks. Correction,
Maybe months, weak and dying soft and slow.
Though each day is a stolen gasp of time,
We mourn, throw out an old man’s teeth too soon.
And in his death I see my own demise--
No more than dust, a crumbling family tomb.
And when the earth our aging ashes keep,
There’ll still be false teeth on a garbage heap.
Scott Hicks has work published in Contemporary Haibun Online, Road Not Taken, Poetry Quarterly, Three Line Poetry, Modern Haiku, Shot Glass, Liquid Imagination, and Down in the Dirt. He came to poetry through therapy and lives in Fresno, California.