The First Two Years: A Yizkor Kavannah



I. The First Day

What?
Wait…what?
No.
How?  When?
Why?
No.
What?
No.
No no no.


II.  Shiva

Thank you for coming
Thank you for coming
Mmm, bagesl and lox, thank you so much.
You know you meant a lot to us.
Thank you for coming
Thank you for coming
Mmm, casserole, thank you so much.
You know you meant a lot to us.
Thank you for coming
Thank you for coming
Mmm, white fish salad, thank you so much.
It means a lot.

Yitgadal v’Yitkadash.
Thank you everyone, please go away now.
Go away.
Go away.
Thank you,
Amen.


III.  Sheloshim

Everyone went away.
Especially you.
One month later
And I don’t know how to be.
Stop it.


IV.  Eleven Months Later

Today I brought a bottle of Scotch to shul
And many little plastic cups.
And just before the Mourner’s Kaddish
I stood up and announced the unveiling.
Eleven months since you died.
I told a funny story
And poured out a drink for anyone who wanted one.
It was nice,
We toasted your life.
But you’re still dead anyway.
You’re still dead.
And I think I”m a little drunk.


V.  Two Years Later

It’s Yizkor on Yom Kippur
And while the rabbi reads off the names
I’m going to tell you an embarrassing secret.

Sometimes when I’m watching TV
And an older couple comes on
In one of those commercials for Social Security supplemental health insurance.
And even though the dialogue is hokey
And the situation is contrived,
They are so warm and familiar with each other,
And you know they have been together for a long time
And plan to be together for a long time to come
And I can’t help it,
It reminds me of you.
I know, right?
But I can’t help it,
It makes me cry.
Only a little.
After all,
It’s silly,
It’s only a commercial for Social Security supplemental health insurance.
Oh, the rabbi just got to you.
It’s good to hear her say your name again.

We remember you, together.  

Amen.
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