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Old Shoes

I’m wearing old shoes
and will for a while yet
the grief still holding close.

Sometimes when the longing
for a single living thing
overcomes me like a sudden hunger
I shuffle from the black mirror
to the long grass, painted in dew

and jerk the mower
into a sputtering roar
as I walk the tight lines
feet slipping in the mud
just to smell the cut grass

remove it in clots
from the black bag
and hold it,
just a moment more
like memories

before releasing it
to compost.

Robert A. Neimeyer, Ph.D., is Professor in the Department of Psychology, University of Memphis, where he also maintains an active clinical practice. Neimeyer also serves as Director of the Portland Institute for Loss and Transition, which offers training and certification in grief therapy.

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