The Side Door
As you slipped the ice grips onto your shoes,
you remembered the last line of that Mary Oliver poem,
the one about her father:
Mother, please save everything.
You think about saving things.
The key to your bedroom, once required, but disused for a decade.
The plate your mother gave you in her 70th year,
when she feared she was close.
And the snow chipper your husband once used to make the walks safe –
the same one your son uses when he visits.
Sometimes you want to move to a smaller home, to ease the letting go.
“Maybe in the spring” you think out loud,
as you collar the dog and leave out the side door.
© Michael Gravel