to dust you won’t return
to keep watch we’ll post a guard
of armored roses, fortified tombs
to send you off a submarine
to send you off a diving suit
sister fly, brother beetle
mother clay, father rain
we return to you your child
with this plastic wreath
this dialogue of polymers with death
this human forever and ever amen
My cousin is dead, and I hardly knew him. He lived and loved and died without me. And now the sun is shining, and everyone’s muttering Hail Marys. My mum and I bought individual roses, but they were bound with a silver ribbon, which I was too embarrassed to remove in public. In any case, what does it matter given all the wreaths of green latex, polyester, or some other substance whose name I don’t even know, though I come into contact with it more often than I do, say, with a giraffe.
Translated from the Polish by Karen Kovacik
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