We have a small town cemetery
On a little hill out on the prairie
And all our folks are buried there,
But there’s no such thing as perpetual care
So we go out there every spring
To mow and rake and do the things
That someone always has to do,
And all our neighbors work there too.
Last spring the graves were a disgrace,
For cactus had overrun the place
And was choking out the prairie grasses
In ugly, prickly, spiny masses.
So a group of us decided that we
Would all get together one day and see
If with spades and shovels and muscles stout
We could dig those pesky critters out.
When I told my husband of our plan
(Now remember, he’s kind of deaf) and Man!
He jumped from his chair, and he stomped around
And he ranted and raved ‘til I finally found
What his temper tantrum was all about
—He thought we were diggin’ the CATHOLICS out!
The Cemetery© January 1991. Excerpted from Grand River Tales and Other Poems by Elizabeth Ebert.