“On this site nothing happened,”
the sign declares at this outdoor café.
Someone took the time shot bullet holes
through enameled coffee pots strung along the fence.
Sipping coffee with cream, I write:
Wind whips sand into a desert dervish.
Next table over Death pulls up a chair.
I see he drinks his coffee black, El Mapais, rolling lava
fills all the emptiness.
Lucky Strike, flick of a match and smoke curls
through his lips red as canyons made for swallowing rivers.
I turn my body so he can’t see and write:
Through nights of stars and blankets the wind drags a shadow,
drags the invisible to light.
This morning I hung out laundry – blue jeans stiff, sheets snapping sideways,
grit in my teeth. Vultures floated circular currents,
shadows of wings beat down heat.
Death is rearranging magnetic poetry on the wall. He writes: I felt
sweet love whisper to me.
Sweet love…I never wanted it to stop whispering.
On this parched patch of earth, a single blade
of grass grows a fraction of an inch.
Bury me in rich loam, not among chalk and bones.
Did I write that? Or did he?