By Erin Kelley
When I die he said I want to be burned to ashes
and parceled out into seventeen velvet bags.
I want them to be given to seventeen young woman
who paint their nails purple for an entire year.
There will be a note with instruction on each bag
for each young woman, to throw the ashes of me
into the face of a young man who reminds me of myself.
One handful for the man who declines a martini
orders a tumbler full of cheap blended scotch instead
(why did I ever drink less than top shelf?)
and one for the man too embarrassed to carry
a fistful of daises to the door for a first date.
One right in the dark eyes he said, his voice warm
with avuncular affection for the youthful mistakes
he was correcting of that man there, thin and stupid
no interest in exercising anything god gave him. God
youth really is wasted on them, isn’t it.
Dump me over the head of a man who stands too long
in front of a full-length mirror, let me grey his hair
and eyebrows, let his mouth round out in surprise,
let him taste the gritty taste of age and death and beyond.
Originally Published April 8, 2014