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Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer: An Open Thank You Letter to Kristen Who Works at the Cemetery

Her smile was clear sky, was green grass,
was slender stream of waterfall. 
Her smile said, You are welcome here.
Her smile said, You are not alone.

She waved to me as I climbed the hill
to sit by the grave of my son and she offered
to water the flowers I’d brought from the garden. 
Her offer was pink snapdragon, was orange marigold,
was golden calendula. Her offer said,
There are some things we can do. 
Her offer said, I see you. 

Thank you, I said. Thank you
for taking care of this place. 
I looked around at the trim lawn, 
the lovely, well-cared for space
where we bring our dead. 
She shrugged and smiled and said, 
We love Finn, and backed away, 
her right hand pressed to her heart,
her eyes embracing mine. 

There are moments so flooded with tenderness
every wall around our heart collapses 
from the beauty of it,
and we are left wet and trembling, like newborns.
There are moments when we are so naked
love enters us completely, shakes us from within
and wrecks us, and there, 
in the rubble of our defenses
we fall so deeply in love with life, 
with the goodness of people,
we are remade. 

When I left, she blew me a kiss. 
I caught it. Twelve hours later, 
I still cradle that kiss in my hand. 



Copyright 2023 Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer

Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer co-hosts the Emerging Form podcast on creative process, Secret Agents of Change (a surreptitious kindness cabal) and Soul Writer’s Circle. Her next collection, All the Honey, comes out in April, 2023.

20 comments on “Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer: An Open Thank You Letter to Kristen Who Works at the Cemetery

  1. Valerie Bacharach
    January 5, 2023

    What a beautiful poem. Those small kindnesses, the gift of being seen.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Karen Hoffman
    January 5, 2023

    What an amazing moment. The thing is, I always think, is: “How easy is it just to be kind?” God bless Kristen for living that and God bless Rosemerry for capturing it so eloquently!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Rosemerry
      January 5, 2023

      So beautiful–“How easy is it just to be kind?” And what a difference it can make. I love that framing, Karen.

      Like

  3. nannydac4
    January 5, 2023

    A Question
    How can we be Kristens in this world
    Always looking for those climbing their
    own Individual hills
    Needing soft spaces, smiles,
    and watering for our parched hearts
    Freely offering healing
    mending our brokenness
    A Second question
    Rosemerry
    How do you capture the beauty and pain of life in words that that speak for us what we cannot.
    Thank you.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Vox Populi
      January 5, 2023

      Thank you for your beautiful words.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Rosemerry
      January 5, 2023

      Thank you, friend, for your kind and creative words … I am so grateful for the Kristens of the world, too …

      Like

  4. Steven Crisp
    January 5, 2023

    Thank you for your gift, Rosemerry
    Though it is not in the package.

    Not under the foil wrapping
    and curled ribbon.

    Not even inside the box.
    Your gift is in the opening itself.

    Gently tapping on my shell,
    and then breaking me wide open.

    How can you do that
    in five short paragraphs?

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Lisa Zimmerman
    January 4, 2023

    Love in action ❤️

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Patti Alexander
    January 4, 2023

    Oh, that we could be fully and always surrounded by Kristens in this life.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Vox Populi
      January 4, 2023

      Oh, yes. Thank you!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Rosemerry
      January 4, 2023

      Yes–and oh, to be a Kristen in this life! What a hero of the heart she became for me in that moment. ❤️

      Like

  7. Rose Mary Boehm
    January 4, 2023

    Oh, wow! That’s such a LOVELY poem, I can feel that kiss. Thank you. You made my day!

    Liked by 1 person

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