Editor's ChoiceMusingsPoetry

Care for the Elderly

My gut is in the garden,
Puked out for all to see.
My daughter is on the swing outside,
Her weight holding daddy firm.
He said he was tired of living.
He said he wanted to go home.

So I took him out the back door,
and attached a noose to his neck.
He was scared.

I reassured him that he’ll go quickly.
I made sure the stool was wobbly,
So his death won’t falter,
even if he backs out.

I made sure to block my heart against his pleas.
And God! Did he beg.
He wanted me to bring him down.
I told him to just let the rope get accustomed with his neck.
He didn’t like the feel.
He kept struggling.

So I made my daughter, Ari
Sit on her swing outside,
so he won’t be able to move anymore.
And I watched him struggle,
struggle and fight for his air.
And when he just dangled,
I made her swing some more,
So he won’t catch that very last breath.

And now, I’m wiping my palms on my shorts.
Mortified about what has to come next.
Because Ari can’t keep swinging forever.
And just like an apple on a tree,
Daddy just has to come down.

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