Elegy After

— Alisha Yi

Lately, I wonder about
the mild weather. The awning,
the fireplace, the smoke-lit
glass, the small house on
small land. I count the wars
inside us, as we walk the aisle,
making prayers of every
distortion. And I wait for
the good word to emerge
between us. Father tells me,
you are not too far away, and
that one day, we will arrive
to you, our original selves
displaced, coming and going.
So, I watch you rise like smoke,
the priest’s voice clean like
the flowers splayed on a casket.
Father makes a film of those
dead around me, and I wonder
whether or not you are lost
in the camera work. In this film,
the darkness and slippage belong
to us, and we cradle every room.
None of us disappears, except
in the room of mirrors, where
time goes on and on, in
the isolated road. I stand, punching
the air, the day fading. I wake
to the green trees and
watch you water them.

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