God is a wall of water
that finishes as a flood.
The foxholes are lit with impious prayers
and I’m humming,
bopping soldiers on the head
to help them come back to breath.
I’m coming back to me soon.
I saw the battlefield:
their knees should have been just twisted stubs
instead of their feet but
piety is not as easy as running away.
Climbing corpses like stepladders
to get back to the top to watch their empires fall
while our heavens stand proud at the top of a mountain
to blow our tangible tops off.
I ate my words too,
no, I drowned in them,
about the fate of nations
and how things should be done
and my love for tangible wounds.
And, boy, do I regret saving every card
my brother ever wrote.
I should have burned his tongue with his body,
but I swallowed it,
wore it like a crucifix to ward off any predators
who try to climb me like steps
on their way to hang me,
and I thought the water was all in my head.
But I’m dead,
I’m at the bottom of a well
climbing over corpses to take a picture of
(everyone is dressed in bones)
the last living oak
and paste it on every empty door
to make the forest my home.
I will survive the ten thousands deaths to God
in praise after all:
the last breeding woman with an empty womb and an incessant drive
to drink the dew soaking up the blaze of color at the end of the rainbow’s line
(your heart tasted like a sunburst)
before the cloud splits in places that I have never
And what will comfort the living?
I’ve got Nana’s rosary, your ashes locked in sterling, and a picture of breath; brown and green, body sturdy and round and hung like a tree, and a memory of him saying: let it go, Sarah, we can’t drown.
The things the dead have left behind.
The dead don’t need to breathe.