By One’s Own Hand
for Sundin Richards
We never met. I knew you only through the poems
that erupted from you like lightning from the muzzle
of a gun or that crackled and sizzled like smack when
it’s smoked. Now all that survives of you are disparate
shadows, shimmering echoes. Someone who knew you
better than me should have noticed you walking away,
collar turned up; should have stopped you before you
disappeared down a dark narrow street of dive bars
and drug houses and single room occupancy hotels.
Today would have been your forty-eighth birthday,
and Facebook, unaware you’re dead, reminded me
to let you know I’m thinking about you. Sundin, I am.