The Boundary Bay Cemetery

The Boundary Bay Cemetery

I)

a grave sits near the gate
on a plot
separated from the others
by a grid of cement roadways

although the lettering is faded
this stone is etched to resist
the wind and the rain
and the cold of a long winter
that day in and day out
takes its toll on even the most constituted of memories

but on this August day
a few visitors wander to and from the placards
deep and black, the glowing marble
radiates a warmth
that can be felt without touch

small clusters of flowers
roses typically
mark the surrounding stones
each petal triggers a memory
or an excuse perhaps
for mistakes gone by
of time poorly spent

this stone
is marked by one fresh rose
placed earlier in the afternoon
by an elderly woman
dressed in her best
Sunday church attire

she carried that rose
across town
all the way from Harris’s nursery

II)

on top of the hill
overlooking the bay and the houses around
is a faded monument of granite
its parts in various stages of decay
nameless and formless
polished smooth and shrouded in
weeds and uncut grasses
its rough edges now gone

does anyone remember the man
who survived both world wars?

this tombstone carries no baggage
like its younger counterparts
it will not accept flowers
to ease past pains
or to serve as a beacon
for someone’s life story