Ashes

For Sarah’s prompt at dVerse Poets Pub, a tribute to Bladerunner, one of my favorite all time movies directed by one of my all time favorite directors, Ridley Scott. We are to write a poem using our senses, like Roy Batty in his ending speech in Bladerunner, the famous Tears in the Rain speech.

Ashes
“That barren pasture. Empty, and salted. The dead space between the stars.” – Niander Wallace, Bladerunner 2049

the sweat rolling down my back
that hot southern morning –
the sweat rolling down my back
and mingled with the tears.
the ground was hard like cement
and I had to take the axe from the
trunk of my car
and beat the blade into the ground
to break it up with an engineer’s hammer.
I finally was able to dig a hole
deep enough to pour
your grey ashes into it.
At the foot of your mother’s grave.
the sweat rolling down my back
that hot southern morning.
your pansy brown eyes looking into mine
that last day. I dug the hole
remembering all you had seen and heard
and shared with me.
gone forever except in my memories,
washed away with the sweat dripping down,
down onto the soil.
I covered the ashes with rocks.
it began to rain, one of those
sudden summer showers. I cried when I
got back into the car and watched
the rain pouring down the windshield.

scene from Blade Runner 2049 in the snow at the end

23 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Frank Hubeny
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 16:44:41

    I like your description of tears with rain on the windshield.

    Reply

  2. Linda Lee Lyberg
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 16:54:17

    Oh, those southern mornings- that takes me back Toni. Well done.

    Reply

  3. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 16:59:01

    Having just put the ashes of my mother to rest this resonated with me…. My mother’s ash rests with her mother and father…. and my father in a so called kolumbarium … which is essentially a box in a wall… but I think I like the physical aspect of burial a lot.

    Reply

  4. msjadeli
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 17:07:51

    Toni the emotions saturating through the sweat and the rain and the hard-packed earth and barely covering the ashes and putting stone on top but needing to bury the memory but barely succeeding. So rich with imagery and emotion. I love your quote and the photo of the final scene from Blade Runner 2049.

    Reply

  5. Glenn A. Buttkus
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 17:24:18

    We’re a couple of BLADE RUNNER fans for sure. Your poem is dynamic, stark. and very personal. The refrains lulled us into the rhythm of the pounding, the digging, like a ballad, or Leonard Cohen lyrics, or a blues tune.

    Reply

  6. sarahsouthwest
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 17:36:38

    I love the repeated detail of that sweat. The sheer physicality of this poem is very powerful, very moving. The liquids that mingle – sweat, tears, rain – very personal, yet with a faint echo of those emblematic lines.

    Reply

  7. Beverly Crawford
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 18:21:19

    Your personal mission was touching, and the tears joining the rain on the windshield were a perfect final chapter.

    Reply

  8. rivrvlogr
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 20:08:33

    This burial is a struggle, just as the emotions we feel when we consider the highs and lows of someone very dear to us, now gone.

    Reply

  9. rothpoetry
    Oct 29, 2019 @ 23:18:49

    A very heartfelt sense filled poem!

    Reply

  10. kim881
    Oct 30, 2019 @ 05:06:57

    The opening lines heated me up on this chilly morning, Toni, and I like the way you introduce the tears mingled with the repeated sweat. The rain is so poignant, especially in the final line.

    Reply

  11. Laura Bloomsbury
    Oct 30, 2019 @ 07:08:47

    the sweat and the tears rolled through this poem – a vivid sense of sadness

    Reply

  12. memadtwo
    Oct 30, 2019 @ 09:43:48

    Intense and emotional. The greyness permeates. (K)

    Reply

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