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last will and testament

before you scatter me

on the surface of the sea,

just know that I wept for you

for years, like my mother

did for her own father

(she murdered his memory the day he left).


I don't leave you a single thing

because you've already taken it all:

remember the first time

you kissed me in the dark

and told me you loved me?

It was a lie

and I died.


So then I resurrected myself,

you were no Jesus

but I was my own Lazarus

and oh, the riches that I found

when I stood on empty pavements

in forgotten cities,

alone and vengeful.

Every night I tasted

expensive wines on many tongues

and I felt many hands around me, rough,

and I said yes yes yes

too much, or maybe not enough.


Sugar dusted my fingers

or at least I pretended it was

because I was still a child, pretending to be bold and tall

but sugar is never sour-bitter

and it never makes your heart race and fall

and I tried not to feel small. Oh, I tried

and said yes to it all.


I came back only to show you

that my death is an echo

of all the women you silenced-

I am their ancestors, their elders

their wildness set free.


You see, you stand at my funeral

you think you knew me.

But.

Funerals are never for the dead,

because they knew the life they'd led-

Instead,

they are for the bereft.

Funerals are always for the ones

that regret the empty, hollow, colorless years

they have left.



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