“Goodbye, Dragonfly”

She chose the spot and gently
I let go its fragile wing,
dropping it into the small hole
she’d dug with a plastic purple shovel.
We didn’t know how it died,
found it on the back step
in the early morning
just before the cardinal started singing.

“Stones,” she ordered
so I hunted around the yard,
bringing back small piles
for her to sort through–
“No shapes,” she said, or “too big.”
She plucked flower petals, arranged
a welcome area,
and asked for four pins, two yellow
and two blue.
I moved quietly about, without questions.

And then, predictably,
I started in with a wordy blessing–
Thanks to the source of life
who makes dragonflies and…

but she interrupted with her own
merciful sermon.

“Goodbye, Dragonfly.”

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