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People stood around after funerals in the country
catching up on who was in town
city folk came home for funerals
talking to those around

ministers stood in black
teachers from the past
girlfriends crying helplessly
watching as he passed

the black hearse at the gate
waiting to take him home
to all the childhood memories
beyond the cobblestone
of his chapel
then later life
the people he chose to court
from backyard cricket and footie
as a boy who lived for sport

what would he tell his parent’s
for now he could not speak
how could he caress the girl
whose love to whom he’d seek

I was lost in a sea of faces
shying for unwanted words
grasping to his mother
whose hug I still remember
for as tears streamed down her cheekbones
clutching at her face
I died a million deaths
in that moment of embrace