Appropriate Closure

arriving with plenty of time to spare
perhaps in common with those around
there is a certain calm from the sprawling lawns
against the backdrop of the motorway drone
the mind is still sedated by a garden

the memorials and landscaped grounds
remain impervious to the residential push
and a steady stream of cars roll
respectfully through the sedentary gates
into this sacred space

there is time to locate the plaque
in the peace garden, Dad’s name and dates
remove an intrusive weed, never tolerated
and gather wind blown purple petals
to fill the concrete flower well

a dead rabbit lies near the chapel buildings
such a surprise to stumble upon
perhaps a child’s precious pet
left the last day of the school holidays
hopeful of finding a fitting finish

the preceding service has ended
a service for a service person
with a guard of honour in full dress
next our turn, our family and friends
congregate, give recognition in the winter chill

the gathering is ushered into the chapel
the focus is on Mum on centre stage
the curtains opened on her life
personal memories pass like a train
the pain and joy of each connection

Mum’s large family always first
‘ is there anything I can do for yous’
and when taken out to lunch in later life
her needs quite simple, her attention given
to a small child at an adjoining table

a great grand daughter holds a flower
unknowing of the occasion
in closing days Mum too without awareness
as the love and support of those around
wrapped her warm, close and safe

the singing of the last song, Mum’s choice
‘ what a wonderful world’
the simple pleasures found from serving
wonderful to her, wonderful to those who knew her
her station reached, the journey over

in the garden a bouquet of white roses
is gently placed against the plaque
and the final mystery of life
lifts like a wedding veil
coupled in the mind of the living

© Richard Scutter 20 July 2007

Footnotes …

Evelyn Dalzell (Harrison) 1/3/1918 – 14/7/2007
Pinegrove Crematorium and Cemetery, Sydney

Mum Celebrating her 88th Birthday

Four Generations ... Maureen, Mum, Sophie, Judy (July 2005)

Family Home: 44 Platform Street, Lidcombe (1950s)


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