river water going down rapids

I’ll float away on river water
beneath a pearly dawn.
No one will see me splutter
for breath and choke and drown.
And fall, fall into the deep,
fall upon the sand.
Where the little fish will pluck at my eyes
and nestle inside my hands.

Find me in the benthos, with
lilies growing through the gaps between my ribs
and duckweed wreathing my head,
a triumphal crown.

And the current will sweep on by
and rub my bones until they’re dry
and smooth as a river stone
and worn and tossed and carried
from mouth to mouth, with no name
and no place and no home but the river water β€”
you wouldn’t know me from Eve but
that skull, that was somebody’s daughter.

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This poem was featured on Gillian Knight’s podcast Smiling Horror. Check out the episode here. You can follow Gillian Knight on Twitter @liljeani.

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