I THINK ABOUT DEATH ALL THE TIME
I think about death all the time:
Yours, mine, hers, his,
When I am at work
Or at the supermarket
Or sitting and drinking
As I listen to country, folk and rock n roll
I fill in the spaces of my thoughts
Imagining my death
The room grows dark
And my heart grows dark
And I think about my impending death
And fill with curiosity.
When I die
Will you honor me, will you cry for me?
Will you still deny me like Peter denied Jesus,
Like a child unwilling to repent?
As the years pass after I am gone, will you be washing dishes
And looking out the window,
Seeing the clouds passing over the tempestuous bay
Before a summer storm,
Think of me suddenly and shudder with loss?
Will you even remember me?
When I die and then you die
Will we meet in the valley
Under a crescent moon
And finally hold hands as we make a vow
Or will my energy just wallow aimlessly
With the ashes of my spent useless body?
I think of everyone and I think of their deaths:
Anne Sexton breathing in poison, rowing away from God.
Adams and Jefferson holding hands and dying together
And hundreds of miles apart.
The death of Christ
In agony on the cross.
The death of my mother
And the death of your mother.
The death of Gram Parsons and Gene Clark,
Drunk no more, singing no more.
The death of Augustine of Hippo
Who said “Wipe your tears and do not cry,
If you love me.
Death is nothing.”
Life is everything.
One thought on “John Tustin”
Considering the morbid subject of this poem and its long length, I kept wondering where it was going. Then suddenly there was Anne Sexton (love her!) and John Adams and Thomas Jefferson. And finally a quote from St. Augustine at the end. Wow!! What a fantastic poem. Bravo!!!!