Permanent Marker:

proclaims the lettering on the grey
plastic barrel. I am told I can choose

from fine or chisel tip and an array
of basic colors; or from new
archival tints in copper, silver,

or gold. But how well will our bones
survive apocalypse, a century or two
buried then boiled in dark

denser than the heart of asphalt?
It is coming, that curtain wrought
finer than chain mail. When it drops

will the smallest shelter a little
longer, the ones that live now
anyway in the interstices?

From the likes of them we know
about palimpsest; what they dropped
or left as they fled. How long

the insect’s brittle, translucent shell
clung to the bark, long after the body’s
insides were blasted.


In response to Via Negativa: Transient.

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