Simply Haiku: A Quarterly Journal of Japanese Short Form Poetry
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Autumn 2009, vol 7 no 3


Last Words
Joyce Hildebrand


“Yesterday,” he wrote, “I heard a clink as, without warning, my wedding band fell off my finger onto the chair.” A week later, I touch his cold hands and remember his final email, typed with the one finger he could still move.

At the graveside, my remaining brothers and I sing “I’ll Fly Away” in four-part harmony. Clouds of breath hover over the handmade casket. We write our goodbyes on the unvarnished pine … the wood soaks up the black ink.

a prairie crocus
holds the sun


Joyce Hildebrand Joyce Hildebrand works as a conservation specialist, writer, and magazine editor for the Alberta Wilderness Association. She lives in Calgary, Alberta with her dog, Dora, and loves the wild places near her home — the Rockies, the prairies and the foothills.