Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Props at My Funeral

While I sleep
throw ropes down my mouth.
Climb in—
But beware of the biting words
that linger along the throat.
They are bitter, always questioning
destiny's decisions.
When you reach a path lit by embers
Grab your cross, and hold it tight.
There, bits of heart decompose along the turn.
You should cover your head, for it drips still
off the ribs
of a splat-
You may even see her against the starless dark.
A ghostly angel playing the loose string
of a smashed violin . . .
(It is true: sometimes the old sounds are deafening
and you can't hear the new ones)
But I digress.
Follow the map that I gave you
and gather the props as you go:
The rusty crown.
The bloody pile of nightingale feathers.
The broken teeth of one genuine smile.
And don't forget the dried up pen and quill.
I should remind you now
to leave by morning,
for tomorrow I will sit at the edge of the world.
There I will smile into the rising sun
and without a thought

drop off.

From the books Selected Poems 2004-2007 and Collected Poems. Also a Best of the Net nominee in 2011.

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