Things I Wish I’d Written Vol. III

I found this poem by Jaswinder Bolina on Verse Daily, and I must have read at least thirty-two times by now. I hope I never have reason to write a poem with the line “The evening they burn your body” in it, but if I ever do, I will be jealous that someone has already used the simile “like a poem turned on its side.

Elegy
In sun the sunburned skin sloughs off the sunburned shoulder.
Most folks believe this is the body’s slow mend.

Most folks believe in the good yolk of the soul.

I believe in autopsy lingo of natural causes should be replaced
with of long-term exposure to the dim, unwavering radiation of the morning star.

The evening they burn your body,
I step into the garden and arrange a crooked line of birdbaths to skip stones across

until a bell tower tolls its eight arguments against daylight
and the skyline illuminates, ragged and unmended

like a poem turned on its side.

The evening they burn your body,
I believe I’ll step into the living room and be greeted by you

or by someone who could play you in a movie.

The curtains are an aurora of earthly proportion.
You don’t exist.

A flash igniting the paned glass is the silent lightning outrunning its noise.

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