To Celia

What would happen if you died and I did not hear of it?


I did not even hear if you had gone on living.


Outside, the poppies are nodding their heads in agreement.

They are docile creatures.

That is easy – they know the seeds they came from.


Inside, we will have rice on the table.  Always rice.

Even when we go out, I do my best

to order rice.  It was rice that fed our togetherness.


Now, we are joined by nothing, not even our names.

In the beginning, it was hard

to live without a name.  Now, my name is of my own making.


Today, I have been thinking of you.  Not in an unkind way

but almost as a total stranger

would shake the hand of another at the end of a war.


(c) Ella Wagemakers, 19.30 Dutch time (= 13.33 EST in the US)

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