When I’m gone you can toss my ashes

into the Winooski River or misplace them

among the boxes in the shed; whatever. For now

I am daughter only to a working dog,

a shepherd with one blind eye and an ethic.

He remembers he loves me each morning

and howls when I leave for work.

When my mother died I found the things

she’d collected for the apocalypse:

canned beans and bandages. She was ready,

I guess, but it made me sad to think

of her living there alone—the whole world

having undreamt itself utterly,

the horizon in flames—wondering

what day it was, and whether I’d survived.

Copyright © 1999 – 2024 Juked