Lockdown Poetry: Joy Harjo

Joy Harjo, ‘Washing My Mother’s Body’

I never got to wash my mother’s body when she died.
I return to take care of her in memory.
That’s how I make peace when things are left undone.
I go back and open the door.
I step in to make my ritual. To do what should have been done,
what needs to be fixed so that my spirit can move on,
So that the children and grandchildren are not caught in a knot
Of regret they do not understand.
From An American Sunrise (2019).
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