This note pushed through the mail slot
Hey guess what! You’ve died.
I forgot to tell you.
Congratulations on passing over.
we all have weird days sometimes
I went around the house looking for evidence of my death
books missing from the shelves, my closet empty of clothes
boxes in the hall marked Give Away
now my wife could throw out the letters
I saved for decades and never read again
the boxes of manuscripts, the negatives
and contact sheets of my youth
to say nothing of the thoughts that still
floated in the air of my study, and memories –
or had I taken those with me?
pack in, pack out
who wants memories muttering in the corners
even I did not, while I was living
having a history was a lot of work
and for what, it’s not like my personality
was ever such a walk in the park
stubbornly maintaining the illusion of a so-called
“identity” day after day – did I think the vice-principal
of the universe would hand me an award
for perfect attendance, to polite applause
at an all-school assembly?
I’ve been dismissed! or maybe this is recess
and one day the bell will ring and we’ll troop inside
and start piling up, all over again,
what will later be someone’s chore to clear away