Burial at Sea

The dead are the life of the party.
Sharks, sure. But small fish too, puckering

at the taste of you. Then come the crabs
with their busy hands

groping their way into your heart.
The tube worms rave

until nothing remains.
Not even the naked architecture of bones.

Just a disturbance,
a footprint in the quicksand;

one last stab at posterity: A liquid name
on a discarded napkin.

You watch your friends sail off
pretending to know the way.

But death’s an empty dance floor
and the wake’s run out of whiskey.

This poem “Burial at Sea” originally appeared in Meanwhile, Home. Spec. issue of Canadian Literature 232 (Spring 2017): 64.

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