I draw my hand across your name,
As if to brush away dust,
Trace the numbers with my finger.
The years are just too few.
If I could give you more,
Turn you to a graybeard man,
With a harvest of children,
I would pile time like riches
on your grave.
What I have brought instead,
Are three stones,
For the wall above your head.
*It is a Jewish tradition to place
small stones on a loved one’s grave.
Beth Solow Mills has been a poet all her life. Her grandmother published many poems in New York’s Yiddish newspapers. Her father read poetry to her from the time she could listen, and she carries her love for words into her elementary school classroom, helping children discover the poems inside them. Publications: Poetica, Educational Leadership, Orbit 60, Mothers Always Write, Gemini Magazine, Snapdragon, Persimmon Tree.