The Corn Funeral

Upon his deathbed
I heard him say,
“I sing to you
O ancient star,
I am your ancient star dust.”
Death on morphine in the West,
death on stacks of hay
in Paraguay.
I heard a fly buzz
around the milling of his last supper.
Leather-sack hands ground the grains.
It must have been those people,
living simple, high and away,
whom he was leaving.
Those people with dust
still upon them.
Cosmic artifacts.
Such guardians
of The Book of Earth
          that links us to
          the mountains,
          and green leaves in water
          where the stars are reflected,
          and always,
          the lineage of Air
          he at last not breathed
          while condors flew above the house
          among burning fumes of corn.

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