A Poemdog

Dogs 2011

THE DEAD INBETWEEN
(8/29/11)


impossible

at least
improbable

highly
impractical
to press
every pulse

record
every respiration rate

test
every body temperature

we see
them
walking
and talking
but how
do we
really know
for sure?

maybe
the population
explosion
has more
to do
with accumulated
attrition
than with
birth rate

we've seen
friends
and loved ones
pass
from in front
of us

but who's
to say
they're
really
gone?

maybe
they're in line
at some supermarket
in East St. Louis

at a movie
theatre
in Katmandu

or strolling
the Seine
in springtime
not remembering
the suffering
from just
a few moments
before

not quite
understanding
their place
or purpose
but continuing
forward
nonetheless

it's all
that they know
after all

why should
our disturbed
concept
of death
be only
a one way mirror
peering
into our present?

we give
the deceased
too much
credit

if they are
among us
they should have
to hold down
jobs
buy shoe laces
and try to find
something of value
to watch
on TV
like everyone
else

dying
doesn't make
them
special

~

maybe
we'll give them
a break
on life
insurance