Memento Mori

When you mourn me, I will look comfortable
yet distressed like when you watched me turn
in my sleep dreaming of drowning or the times
I spent crouched down, hands pressed hard
against my ears, silencing the cries
of the slaughtered lambs. You will hear
a whisper of my voice, the subtle hint of my laugh,
& before the warm votives & yellow roses,
you will trace my sewn pale lips with the tips
of your thumbs & pray to take some atom of me
into the hollows of your chest, yes. But do not pray
for me the right way, kneel in my memory,
offer intentions or light candles—for I’ll have scarred
everyone when I pulled the ripcord sewn into
their hearts. It’s enough to remember me by—
their bodies jerked skyward. & I sweat
that thought out until I sink home to blue-edged
silence in a cold sea, bone clouds lit by whiteness,
nothing more than ashes now—silver, wild, insistent.
An elegy of fire never worth more than this,
lambs quiet, the sky churning its long winter night,
the body knowing just what it needs to burn.