( after Anne Sexton )
‘Death’, sounds almost tender
and childlike when I say the name,
rhyming as it does with ‘breath’,
A life force unlike, lesser the end,
when a door is pried open
with a common kitchen utensil.
I didn’t pay attention and failed,
leaving me to salvage
Plath’s words before her last,
When we’d speak of it many times,
as fireflies, like girlfriends,
sending up smoke rings to be the first.
Now I jealously guard the rite
while I still have life and a history,
and can recall all the words.
I’ll silently invoke the spell
in the cryptic speak of suicide
during a vintner’s year.
When the passion returns,
not meant for here, I’ll open the shed
and it will all be in front of me.