His voice was once heard
by Ilari Pass
The story of death is in the leaving.
There is no sweetness here
no shelter that’s not forced
no golden door, no sunset gates.
There are no words
in a lifeless piece of legislation
for your vacant body placed in the hard bed
of a grave, no birds to drink the cold
rain cupped in your open hands, which hold
emptiness like a treasure. You apprehend no god
in the closure of your eyes, which see
nothing, always. You cannot be named
by hymn or howl. What have you become?
No revenant ever tells. Let the rain
come down. The shutters on the village houses
close. His voice was once heard
in your house. Your horses stand for now
under the distant trees. They do not forgive.
They do not condemn. Your body, left
here under this earth, will not be found. One horse,
wet with rain, turns and bows down, eating.
About the Author
Originally from Maplewood, NJ, Ilari Pass is a retired maintenance worker of the United States Postal Service. She holds a BA in English from Guilford College of Greensboro, NC, and an MA in English, with a concentration in literature, from Gardner-Webb University of Boiling Springs, NC. She was awarded the Broad River Review Editors' Prize in Poetry Award for 2016 and 2017, and Ron Rash Award in Poetry finalist for 2019.
Other works appear or are forthcoming in The American Journal of Poetry Drunk Monkey: Literature and Film, JuxtaProse Literary Magazine, Free State Review, Blue Mountain Review, and others.