Everything again

What if memory’s just the dead, flourishing differently
from how they flourished alive?

Carl Phillips, Stop Shaking

Twenty-five years later,
calm as compline,
hushed as heavy snow,
wired to a dozen

impassive monitors,
she left. Or rather,
what remained, the
mortal wound inflicted

long ago: the loss,
the betrayal, the
accident that
changed everything.

Monty Clift, they say,
was Hollywood’s longest
suicide, that exquisite
face crushed behind the dash,

then cobbled into a
coarse semblance,
reminiscent but ruined
in aspects difficult to articulate.

If we are sovereigns
of our own skins,
we are also masters
of the incomplete recovery.

Send flowers, then, at
the assigned time,
speak the long-
postponed eulogy:

Here was a person,
and now an absence,
once more perfect
and complete.

Aren’t we given everything,
again and again?






  1. Beautiful write and picture, Cate.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Anita! The photo is just a public-domain image of Clift, whose face was so finely and exquisitely made. I appreciate the time you take to read and comment.


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