Nothing was so mysterious
as your body coming to a close,
the winches of your arms and legs
slackening, your mouth loosened.
You were lying under a white coverlet
as if under a field of snow.
Something was beginning to drift
like the sound of a train in the distance
under the color of sky.
It was difficult to think
that train is for you, not me
but it was almost easy too.
The birds outside the window
were breaking the glassiness of the morning,
the merciful were disguised
as women in white gowns.
You opened your eyes and asked
what I would remember of you
and I couldn't help but think this
you in a field of snow
and the train waiting by a platform
and the invention of death
twittering outside with feathers.
If language hadn't failed me then
and I remembered speaking.
If silence hadn't entered and sat down
like a fat dark uncle on your bed
and begun stroking your hand.
Carnegie Mellon University Press