“On Closing the Apartment of my Grandparents of Blessed Memory” by Robyn Sarah

And then I stood for the last time in that room.
The key was in my hand. I held my ground,
and listened to the quiet that was like a sound,
and saw how the long sun of winter afternoon
fell slantwise on the floorboards, making bloom
the grain in the blond wood. (All that they owned
was once contained here.) At the window moaned
a splinter of wind. I would be going soon.

I would be going soon; but first I stood,
hearing the years turn in that emptied place
whose fullness echoed. Whose familiar smell,
of a tranquil life, lived simply, clung like a mood
or a long-loved melody there. A lingering grace.
Then I locked up, and rang the janitor’s bell.

“On Closing the Apartment of my Grandparents of Blessed Memory” by Robyn Sarah from Questions About the Stars. © Brick Books, 1998.

Happy National Poetry Month!

3 thoughts on ““On Closing the Apartment of my Grandparents of Blessed Memory” by Robyn Sarah

  1. Mike Mirarchi

    What a poignant poem! Thank you, Christy! It reminds me of when my mom and I packed up my grandmother’s house after she passed away. Her house had a “familiar smell, / of a tranquil life, lived simply . . . .” ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Very solid sentiment without a trace of sentimentality. This lovely little bit of work: “or a long-loved melody there. A lingering grace”, opens doors of memories and music even as it portends finality and silence.
    “Then I locked up, and rang the janitor’s bell.” captures power in its simplicity: there is a note of grace in a long-loved melody.
    And even in the conclusion of the business at hand, the counter-melodic business of death, the melody and the grace both linger on in the impossible not to hear melody of the keys, the ringing of the janitor’s bell.

    Liked by 1 person

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