No one else wanted the old hoover
So I took it, added to a mover’s load
Of furniture and memories inherited
The last time you downsized.
No harm, I thought, in keeping
An extra for the basement.
But after all, It stood unused
Until this time of quarantine
When I was home to notice how the dust built up.
Unzipping the case, I found
The bag was nearly full
Loaded with the dust
of the last home you lived in on your own
Eight years ago.
When this dust was collected, you were still alive, Now
Your ashes rest on my sister’s closet shelf
Wrapped in your favorite shawl
Waiting out a pandemic before a burial gathering.
I take out the bag and fold it for the trash
Pausing as I hold in my hands
This dust from a completed life
Ashes to ashes, we say. Dust to dust.