We talk about the stars and the dead like they are one and the same
but I know that the dead don’t sparkle. Why would they?
Bones don’t shine in the ground.
I’ve never seen a cemetery
that glowed like a carnival, rows of tombstones lit up
like Satan’s personal catwalk.
In the sky the stars are dazzling pearls, the whitest teeth sharp like fangs,
sugared asteroids burning fuel
and laughing at us for it. I get it. I would laugh at me too,
still stuck down here trying to discover what’s next after what’s next
after what’s next. And it gets really funny when you figure out
you actually never know. You take one look in the mirror and realize
I’m the punchline.
Before today I had two sisters. One had pistols for hands
and they had a name for her and how she didn’t talk she just
fired, left hand going right and right hand going left
and by the time she was done so were the negotiations.
To her I really was the punchline:
too small, two hands
that are just hands, too likely
to be dispersed than
to bloody a room
in two seconds.
She’d look me dead in the eye
and say shit, yeah.
You’re the joke.
I know the dead aren’t disco balls. I have
seen them, the bodies sprawled in boxes,
husks not having to ask what’s next
after what’s next after what’s next.
They’ve already found it. They’ve left the
rooms of their lives dark and are sauntering off
into the grand lit hallway of whatever is next.
Joke’s on them,
my sister always said,
except I never quite understood
how any of this was supposed to be funny.
The moon is the ultimate dead girl:
a goddess of a skeleton, hips dusted
with celestial ash, the gaps in her skull
not ditches but beckoning caverns,
pockets full of of secrets aglow in the dark.
No one would ever laugh at her
when her one job
is to help you see at night, at least a little.
She was the only one who held my hand