Clouds rampant on a field azure, clouds argent,
Shadows under them – whatever grey is in heraldic language – cendrée
They rise up into the sky from left to right over the freeway as I drive
It’s spring – earliest spring – the spring of light before the fresh green of spring appears
Today is my mother’s birthday, the first one since she died.
Why is it that while I drive I feel bereft? I feel her loss more strongly than at any other time.
More often than not I get in the car, single-minded, to drive somewhere to accomplish some errand
And suddenly my eyes fill with tears and my mind fills with sadness because she isn’t there
What is it about being alone behind the wheel that differs from being alone anywhere else?
Blinking tears away to see the road, waiting for the moment of bereavement to recede
Why do I feel like this and when will it get better?
And wouldn’t she say if she were here, “Robin, don’t be sad. It’ll be all right,”
Just like she spent my whole life saying whenever something went wrong and I came to her with it.