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MY PARENTS CONSIDER WHAT THEY'LL DO WITH THEIR REMAINS

by OTTAVIA PALUCH (Canada)

Issue 2.2    August 2020

People evaporate.

But not as quickly as water

on a chalkboard as it’s getting 

washed. There is so much to erode.

All this unnecessary dust that hangs 

in the balance for too long. Think 

of weightlessness. Think of almost 

being invisible. Think of each other. 

Neither of you want to be buried.

Burning is better. They call it 

cremation. The disposal, the 

neglect of the physical. Because

nothing will matter after it occurs.

We’re just ash and dirt.

Whatever wasn’t wished upon a star. 

My mother has a suggestion 

for a later chapter of her husband’s 

autobiography. The epilogue. 

She plans on keeping his remnants

in a diamond ring, a means of 

bringing him along wherever she 

goes. But this is my father’s 

leitmotif. He says to dump

what’s left of him onto the 401.

Strangers will drive pass him

forgetting the existence of death

as the fragments of his bones

rattle. Dad says to play some 

Rush on the drive there.

To inscribe 2112 on the driveway 

of our house, knowing that 

no one will know of its existence

or significance but us. God,

I love him. Keep him here forever.

I know that's impossible but for so long

I thought death was, too. 

There is little I could want more

than to fill in the blanks of the 

crossword puzzle, the lines

on his face.

 Ottavia Paluch, 16, is a disabled high school student who lives in Ontario, Canada. A 2018 Gigantic Sequins Teen Sequin, she is an alum of the Adroit Summer Mentorship and Flypaper Flight School programs, and her work is published in many literary journals. She is thankful that My Chemical Romance reunited.

 

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