This will not be the last closet of clothes

I empty out and sort through and get rid of,

in one way or another,

over more or less time.

Nor is it the first, really.

I have packed and unpacked

and people float in and out like fall leaves.

Alive and dead, here and gone

In body, in mind, in heart.

No, this is the beginning.

The folding and packing and ridding of

cotton sewed in tiny shapes

snaps and velcro and baby animals.

For me, they will always be bigger, now.

They will be suits and dresses, blouses and ties

drawers and closets and attics.

It’s okay if I am alone.

I will sort and touch and remember and fold and haul and carry

Yes, this is only the beginning

of the passing and moving and carrying on.

We keep but one or two trinkets of a whole life

stored up, folded and put away, valued or forgotten

and the rest, the rest that out live us,

our beating hearts or the love in them,

go on.

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