“…So make each grain a universe,
each universe an origin that billows into next and next” ~ Daniel Tobin

The living take
pictures of the dead
lying in state— the form

they’ve left behind,
the body’s wrappers held
in place a few more days

before the crematorium’s heat
or fertile soil usher the cells
into the mystery of their afterlife.

Stiff and posed in pleats
of satin, flower-framed within
the box of metal or of pine:

as if they know to suffer this
one more nicety before taking
to the open road.

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