Sunday, May 20, 2018

chester giles writes

funeral poem

i’ll talk about funerals because its easy to talk about funerals and sound like you’re saying something big.

it makes it easy to appear deep 

and i can laugh at myself in this space 

it was grandmothers funeral last week and its lynnes funeral on Thursday 

i’ll have to take the train to that one 

along past the estuary where i once saw god 

she was a nice woman gone sooner than seems right 

she was kind and gentle 

she possessed great warmth 

now my friends are without parents back there in the home town

sooner than seems right 

and grandmother gone too  

and her laughter and her smile 

she’s with the saints now 

i touched her dead head there in the hospital and felt her skull as i stroked her hair 

i saw it 

death in the attitude of her jaws 

i felt her cold skin

and wept and hurt and gave thanks 

she is with the saints now 

they both are  

the loss of  matriarchs 

         tears roll down my cheeks 

the loss of matriarchs 

holding families in their arms 

         it feels like falling away from the earth 

and makes me wonder how it will be when my mother will be gone 

that dream of the dying forest 

that dream of walking through the forest as it dies  and i move into the grey city 

that dream of being displaced on the earth 

         out on the estuary as the rail glints and shines and rises  

lifted on the pale thin light 

         i could shiver 

the cancer in my mothers blood in my mothers bones moving around her body 

when i light the candle and ask the saints for guidance

when i ask the saints to please be careful with their actions and to watch over me 

to please be patient 

it some how seems more proper to talk to the people who became immortal because after all they were here once 

      i’m just a little boy crying for my mother  

      pretending i’m talking about funerals 

      i can laugh at myself like this 

todays just another day just like any other 

mothers die 

even though they made us in their bodies 

even though they held us in their arms 

      its that pale thin light again 

      and that rail rising 

      while the ground falls away and that dream of displacement persists 

i dont like this movie 

mother i want to be held in your arms forever 

there we go   just a child crying 

let these words haunt you so i can feel immortal and so that i can feel sainted 

i’m thinking of great funeral pyres and our bodies laid out there while the flames lap our forms

funerals and saints and mothers 

and that pale thin light lifting 

as we weep and light candles  

Image result for funeral pyre paintings
See you in Valhalla --  Mateusz Katzig

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