Love is no stronger than death.
Death is stronger than love.
You do not come back to her.
You wait for her and that
is not love. What vanishes
is not love. The dark day.
Snow piled where you walked
without a hitch so long.
Ice under the crust. Don’t fall,
viejo. The bones are brittle.
The body vanishes. The shovel
with bright bones and flesh
clinging to ashes. The technology
takes you in one end and spits
what’s left of you out the other.
I have been sorely unamused,
viejo, dark is your view of life
when it ends not only in death
but in vanishing. Open the grate,
stand back. Blaze at the door.
And yet there is more to love
than the life we call happiness,
a condition. No more than sorrow
once the fire dies down. Nobody
knows how to die and come back,
or love and not destroy;
those are no questions or facts.
In the boiler room the labor
intensive skill worked the bones
overtime. Pain, time and a half.
(revised, 24 December 2010)
copyright 2010 by Floyce Alexander