In the silence above your grave a butterfly
waits for your eyes to open, hears
their pollen living off the darkness
and for a long time this way and that
returns with dirt in its mouth
to find who buried you –not yet a bird
it sifts for step by step though the ground
is still breathing in the smoke
fires don’t want anymore –from memory
one wingtip will follow the other
loosen the huge stone looming over you
as cradlesong made from wood and side to side
as if there is a name for afterward
some ashes will still cover the shoes
mourners unlace just for the sound.
About the Poet
Simon Perchik is an attorney whose poems have appeared in Partisan Review, Forge, Poetry, Osiris, The New Yorker and elsewhere. His most recent collection is The Osiris Poems published by boxofchalk, 2017. For more information including free e-books and his essay “Magic, Illusion and Other Realities” please visit his website. You can watch one of his interviews here.
For the first time in nearly five years, Vita Brevis is closed for submission. Read the full story here.