with a line from Ciaran Berry
Time to call out the skirling ghosts, to count like beads on an abacus, your disappointments. This day began with my order Do Not Resuscitate accepted crisply over the phone. Now I also move toward elegy, ask your forgiveness for trying to interrupt your dying. Here at your bedside I will build a longboat. Lay as keel, your birth. Sculpt the ribs, fit the strakes from what came later. Caulk with images—the child you were, the boy. Then lay the man you are on folded sails; loose the mooring and release you to your fathers. Polaris bright above to steer you home.
Copyright © 2016 by Cathie Sandstrom. Originally published in Clementine Unbound, December 2016. Used with permission of the author.