02/19

my mother writes fake obituaries 

from her bedroom of mirrors.
i hear the sound of sirens
turning themselves into apples.
foreheads falling from their shelves.
red is the color of emergency
& i wake up one morning to 
a room of nothing but red. 
childhood made headlines of me.
breaking breaking breaking.
once i cut my finger & nothing but
confetti came out. our neighbor died 
& they held a viking funeral.
flooded the town. loud speakers bloomed
from flag poles to announce 
the world was briefly ending 
but would resume in the morning.
lately, i talk to death 
like a protagonist. i say,
"did i know this man who turned to dirt?"
my mother loves to invent names.
she asks if i know the oldest color 
& i say i don't when i really do.
blue goes to sleep some nights 
& everything is deeper. i dig a grave
to bury my telephone. the newspaper arrives.
we read a mixture of tall tales
& elegies. for years now every day 
opens with elegy. i have said
enough farewells to fill a bathtub.
i ask my mother if she remember
when i died. she hold up 
the newsprint square that describes 
how i died of unnatural causes.
hit in the head with a fallen planet
to be exact. i fold the paper up
& let it melt on my tongue
like a communion wafer. no more god.
no more typewriter. it's just
my mother & i & staircases
to the grey-cloud afternoon.
"no one at all can die today,"
i inform my mother. our bodies
are quadropled by the mirrors 
all around. she accepts this. writes 
fake birth announcements instead.

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