In the End, Death Isn’t That Funny

My book is about death but it is also funny. However, before you read any further and think I am hard-hearted or unfeeling, let me state unequivocally, losing your parents hurts. This poem reflects on death and loss far better than I ever could. Why did I choose to write the book with humor? Because that is the only way to survive the otherwise very painful process of watching a parent die as you suffer through dealing with your dysfunctional siblings.

What We Talk About When
We Talk About Love
by John Jeffire (Goodreads Author)

So many ways of looking
At a blackbird tossed
In the autumn sky.
From the dry shadows
Of the bed from which
The sun cannot step,
Your whisper flits above:
I am free to leave.
First, a living will,
Power of attorney,
No machines or tubes,
We first discussed this
When our hearts beat quick
In the raven’s glimmer,
A clatter of wings burst
At red clay and live oak—
Free to go. But I have
No southern stomach.
I wipe feces from crevices
My tongue once explored,
I scrape uneaten meals
From cracked plates,
I dig arms under whatever
Is left to dig under—
So many ways of looking
At a blackbird thrown
In an autumn sky, life alit
In the few uncollapsed rivers
Of your hands, and I consider
The offer, freedom, mine from
You or yours from me not clear.
Stand with me, survey the distance:
Blanched earth, seedless,
Scab stubble frozen pools,
Creek frozen in its sheets,
The only proof of life its absence:
The bank gives way beneath our feet,
I grip the crest of your waist,
And one wing between us,
We take flight.


3 thoughts on “In the End, Death Isn’t That Funny

    1. You are so right. I had the commitment, did my best to be honest, and I surely had knots and tangles galore. Memoir is not for the faint of heart. I completely understand those who choose not to indulge. It is an indulgence of sorts, I must admit.


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