Published on Academy of American Poets (

His Corpse Was Beautiful

Dominic Adam Dixon
(January 30, 1990–August 28, 2011)

Locks like still rows of wheat.
Skin, rich, even, like mud pies
kids pat out with stubby,
uncoordinated fingers & palms.
His nose, unsunk & prominent
like a lynching tree
whose limbs decline to
fail under a body’s worth
of weight. Those lips, darkened,
full as the smoke which rose
slow from them, wrapped
itself into the sky. The suit—
I hated the suit; it was far too still
for a resting person. No one
sleeps in suits. Or boxes.


Copyright © 2015 by Melanie Henderson. Used with permission of the author.


Melanie Henderson

Melanie Henderson, born and raised in Washington, D.C., won the 2011 Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award for her debut collection of poems, Elegies for New York Avenue. She received the Larry Neal Writers Award in 2009 and a 2013 Pushcart Prize nomination from Iris G. Press.

Date Published: 2015-04-22

Source URL: