“Sue, sister, sweet”
I remember when I first knew you were my sister –
you, sitting on the edge of the claw footed bathtub
in the crowded bathroom of an old Milwaukee flat, crying.
I sat on the toilet, listening, and I knew then:
You are my sweet, sweet sister, Sue.
I remember you at 8 months pregnant –
another baby on the way!
– we were just girls, really –
I remember your voice all night long
in the dark Carolina night,
the light from your cigarette, up and down, up and down,
the two of us, laughing, laughing.
We laughed until dawn.
During the day, you were Mom.
I remember years later, in my new life,
you bringing me a home-baked goodie
while I was still in bed – insisting that I accept this gift of love!
I remember you marching me to the classical music CD’s in the back
of Barnes and Noble – music, your other love!
You bought me Beethovan.
I listened, all spring long, to the minor notes,
mourning another Sue.
Now, these notes are for you.
I mourn for you.
I remember your coming through for me through all the years, sweet Sue.
I was always certain of your love –
across miles, across different lives, across hard years and good years.
I remember – will remember always –
you waving goodbye (I watched in my rear-view mirror),
as I drove away from you for the last time.
“I don’t know when I’ll see you again, Sue,” I said into your silence.
You knew, you knew, you knew, my sweet, sweet sister, Sue.
A tribute to my beloved sister-in-law, Sue Lass, who passed on Friday, May 22, the day before her 72nd birthday. I will miss her – forever.