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There Are No Lessons for the Dead

There is no longing for the dead,
no remorse or regret of not having
lived a fuller life—the Dead Sea
does not wish to be ocean or river,
a frozen finch perched under a tree
is no more alive than the leaves that
contain it. We are aware of this but
are creatures of ceremony so we do
what we do best when someone dies.
We offer the spring contained within
the winter of our grief—the yolk that
is meant to be some scale of how to
browbeat meaning from our demise.
The truth is, longing is a ruin of one.
The truth is the future is filled with
terrible news & we are all not Gods
but strangers gathering mementos for
a sad goodbye—one of us picking up
where the others leave off—smiling as
if we have a say in a clock’s ticking—
when we are just notes in the margins
& adieu is the unfinished language of
ones who dwell in the chill of goodbye.


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