The Day We Talked About Death At Church
I thought I heard the tap
of someone choreographing
a knitting needle, but it was the flame
that licked the tin–a noisy burn.
Every fire beneath a soaring roof of song
becomes a sign of magical transformation.
It takes a flicker to illuminate the line
from baby cry to broken hip and fractured cross.
I felt the hold of all the tempered breaths,
abundant as bird song over a waiting pond.
It takes skill to name a creature by its call,
to unmask a melody in the first second,
to waste so much time and not blame
ourselves for the wasting. I thought
I heard the birds but it was my breath,
the force of a sigh to smother the flame.
Trapper Markelz (he/him) is a poet, husband, and father of four, who writes from Boston, Massachusetts. His work has appeared in the journals Baltimore Review, Stillwater Review, The Moving Force Journal, Greensboro Review, Passengers Journal, High Shelf Press, Dillydoun Review, and others. You can learn more about him at trappermarkelz.com.