Ficlet: Unanswered Questions

A few drops of water trickled over the edge and off the casket. The sprinklers a few feet away had been on for a couple of minutes now. Max didn’t seem to mind. His eyes were set on the mahogany shell resting in the earth before him.

A fairly large cedar tree behind him was casting a sharp shadow across the left edge of the casket. Max shot a glance down to his wrist then returned his gaze to the sunbathed casket below. He’d been there for two hours. The funeral had been over for one and he knew the work men were getting tired of waiting. He knelt down, scooped up a handful of earth and clutched it as hard as he could while looking across the full length of the casket.

“Why?” His voice was scratchy and the words barely left his mouth, though his eyes watered a bit. “Why didn’t you?”

He clutched the dirt even harder in his hand, as if trying to squeeze the rest of the words from it. When nothing came out, he raised his hand and released the first grains of dirt that would cover his mother forever.

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