Posted in Poems

The night stretches on


A sadness fills the old lady. She needs help, always. Into the wheelchair and out of it. Onto the bed; fed, bathed.

Her mobility almost gone. It takes an effort daily, to move. Pain has become her constant enemy. She wants to die. Yet, God tells her to wait.

She wants to go home. She pleads with God. And cries out to Mary. She turns to Jesus. Please Jesus. Take me. And she waits impatiently for Jesus.

There is no answer, she cries. She rants. Jesus, why? She screams. She pleads. Jesus, why?

She turns to me and asks me to follow. I tell her I cannot. She ask, why not? Because only God decides. This continues.

I’m emotionally exhausted. She sees the dead. She screams. Why are they here? Her eyes look beyond me. Yet, God hasn’t answered.

Out of the blue she scolds the caregiver. Then she ask to be forgiven. They hug and comfort her. They understand her pain, her fear.

She is frightened. Like a child frightened of the dark. Of death that draws nearer. This journey, she must go alone. I cannot lead or follow.

But death waits. It could be soon or not. It waits for God’s call. She calls the Father. Will He answer her?

Midnight. The witching hour. She cannot sleep. There is no sleep. She is awake and crying. Yet, she doesn’t know why. We sing hymns to her, yawning. The cats are puzzled. It’s a long way until dawn. The night stretches on.

By C.E. Pereira