Monday Poem


I should be devotional
in my mother’s way
standing at the mouth of a tomb
with its rolled stone
empty as the night sky between stars
empty as the space within atoms
because, they say, a man died
but beat death and would
bequeath immortality
to those who believe
death can be beat entirely
so that bodies may embrace in heaven
so that what was so finally scattered
when death came with its scythe
to slide between two lives
setting one adrift to sobs and cries
—so entirely that death would be shown a fool

to believe
against one’s belief
is one way
one dies

by Jim Culleny