Boxes and Bells


Upper Slaughter, Lower Slaughter—

Oxfordshire's seesaw of names.  Mostly

we stayed on the left-side of things.  Parked

the boxy red rental, walked sloping roads

where sheep had passed.  That's how sweet

it was.  Someone played a bell-song.  (You

grinned, "The Gilligan's Island theme

would be my only repertoire."  We laughed

at the clang of our American-ness.)

Gray evening slipping into the churchyard,

we sat.  Unbeknownst to me, more cancer

cells poked around in your blood.  You

knew something:  "I want to be cremated,

but somewhere . . .  a stone."

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