On the morning of her last day,
I tried to mulch the newly seeded lawn
on the west side of the house
where I had shaved away the slope
and left something closer
to the shape of flat that makes
a game of croquet play a bit better.
kept blowing away the strands of straw
until finally I gave up,
knew that whatever else this day
might be good for,
it wasn’t this.
I thought I might be able
to finish the larger part that afternoon
but the wind kept blowing
throughout the day,
even shoving the truck a bit sideways
on my way home from work.
At dusk, the wind lay off enough
that I could finish the work
I’d started earlier,
scattering straw in the dark
and grateful for knowing her
and the way she always seemed to know
whether or not it was a time for giving up
or for coming back later.
And that a thing that wasn’t worth finishing
shouldn’t be started.