December 18, 2019

A spider led me to a cemetery

There is a spider in my car

Wholly uninvited in this space

Distracting me from an otherwise leisurely ride

Its spindly legs causing me to swerve sharply

An unfounded panic taking hold of the wheel

 

 

I cut the wheel and find myself at “Zion,”

It says

“Lutheran Church & Cemetery”

 

 

Door flung open, no longer able to find my new companion

I decide to walk

 

 

A blanket to cut the December wind

Boots to survey the frozen ground

Gloves to forage through withered flowers

Once bright and inviting

Now decayed and deformed

 

 

I walk among them, the Margarets and Marys and Georges 

Reading their faded markers

Touching the ones that had fallen apart decades ago

 

“At Rest” they read

At rest indeed.

Surrounded by a world ever changing, ever moving, ever evolving

These corpses beneath the ground

They were somebody’s somebody

Once

Their memory lay on the tongue of the living

Once

Their unwashed clothes held a lingering scent

Once

 

 

 

Once

Was a hundred years ago now

Those tongues have stopped speaking

Those hearts have stopped beating

 

 

New markers are born

The ground overflowing with bodies

Holes are dug to put skeletons in metal boxes

The madness continues

The world keeps turning

The clock keeps ticking

The children keep screaming and growing and reaching for the hand of any living thing that will love them enough for the moment

So they can run past the tombstones that litter the ground and ignore the Johns and Davids and Helenas they never knew

Never will know

 

 

It’s cold

My fingers are freezing

But they are plucking plucking plucking away

Pulling the berries at the root

Grasping to save something from this place

Feebly trying to immortalize any creature still clinging to life in this ocean full of death

 

 

Where is this going?

Where am I going?

To the ground, soon enough.

To oblivion, one day.

To my own grave dug by a strangers hand so in a hundred years a child can run past the place where my bones have turned to dust and my memory is scattered among the trees and turn to read my name and perhaps for a moment wonder who I was and make up some story about my life and perhaps pick a berry from the eye of this soil and take a goddamn moment to stop the madness of living to ponder the madness of dying.

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