(original version posted June, 2009 — revised)
The best part of longing for death
is that nothing we know
contradicts any vision of the afterlife,
no matter how outlandish it may be.
What you will leave behind — your cold face
colder than it is now; the mess left in the sheets and
the messier one left in the ground; the grief
stuck to your loved ones’ lips; the pain through which
they’ll whistle every word for a long time; those things
won’t concern you at all
and in fact will have nothing to do
with what happens to the truth of you.
A longing for death is a form of hope
that the disaster of our last moments
and the existence that follows them
will be so separate from each other
that the latter will make up
for our lifelong slide
into the former.