Picking the Faded Blue

On this dread anniversary — so close on the heels of the other one — one of my favorite poems from Robert Frost, A Late Walk:

When I go up through the mowing field,
The headless aftermath,
Smooth-laid like thatch with the heavy dew,
Half closes the garden path.

And when I come to the garden ground,
The whir of sober birds
Up from the tangle of withered weeds
Is sadder than any words

A tree beside the wall stands bare,
But a leaf that lingered brown,
Disturbed, I doubt not, by my thought,
Comes softly rattling down.

I end not far from my going forth
By picking the faded blue
Of the last remaining aster flower
To carry again to you.

Time will not heal this wound, Mom, no matter how much time passes between then and now. I won’t let it.

a grim, yet fitting, reminder