Mourn

Who brings you news of your father’s death?
I don’t know, but it’s the first time I see you
really crumple: your legs buckle, then splay
open. Then you bend from the waist
as if broken. I don’t understand where
the unearthly howl comes from— a grief
guttering through the body’s entire architecture,
then loosed through the open mouth. What syllable
is this, pure name burned by fire to one
dark smudge? And how will I know, when it is time,
what sound I will be expected to make?

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