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Saul and Charlotte: Poems Commemorating a Father and Mother

by Louis Daniel Brodsky


Her Last Dance

In her third day of preparing for her return journey,
Our mother drowses in the twilight hours
That precede the ancient sages' sleep of the ages.

In her purposeful postponement of her soul's going,
She's scoring, orchestrating, choreographing
Her last dance, calculated to gather her family,

Hold us, with our rapt, cathartic sadness,
In the palms of her hands, which rest on her chest —
A ballerina performing a pas de deux, with God.

In this fragile, perilous state of balance,
Between breath and silence,
Only her weary reflexes are keeping her dancing.

Entranced by the artistry of her exquisite mortality,
As she glides, en pointe, across the shaded stage,
We hold our breath, in sympathy.



Saul and Charlotte: Poems Commemorating a Father and Mother is Louis Daniel Brodsky's tribute to his parents, who died almost nine years apart. It commends the beauty and laments the tribulations of their longevity. Though the poems deal with death's complexities, it is death itself that elicits Brodsky's reflections on his parents' lives — sensitive poems that neither dewell on sorrow and grief nor rely on sentimentality. This book's complementary parts, "Heavenward" and "Homeward," suggest that his father and mother are journeying to the same place, where they'll live together, forever, their love eternal.



I have finished reading your book of poems, today, about your mother and father. Words are not adequate to convey how deeply moved I was, by your devotion to them, your honesty about the complex nature of your father-son relationship, your savoring of the details of home and hospital and dinners, with your mother, and hotel rooms, with your father. I do feel that I know them and am also aware of the blessing you received, of Linda, just as they were sailing away. Thank you, for sharing this with me.
— Judith Sarah Schmidt, Ph.D., Co-Director of the Center for Intentional Living and author of How to Cope with Grief


Our parents forge who we are to become in our lives. Saul and Charlotte: Poems Commemorating a Father and Mother is a collection of poetry from Louis Daniel Brodsky, who writes in tribute to his deceased parents, as he writes on what death has brought to his life and what he hopes lies ahead for them, in the afterlife. Saul and Charlotte is a moving and much recommended pick for poetry assortments.
Midwest Book Review


This book is available in Kindle, Nook, Sony, Kobo, and Apple E-book formats, for purchase, and through public libraries' Overdrive account, for loan.