poem


by Simon Perchik




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.