Separation, by Martin Willitts Jr

Separation
by Martin Willitts Jr

Decidedly, the body enters a coma,
and it will not come back.
The heart-blood walks down a long corridor
away from its source. The brain
keeps firing a few tentative sparks,
enough to be considered alive.
The respirator forces air into the lungs,
but for all intents and purposes,
the body is dying, clinically dead.
Parts are splintering off
like decayed branches from a tree.

The relatives hover, however, discussing options:
pulling the plug; or maintaining a false premise
of life, hoping for a resurrection.
They hope for a report from the beyond
where the dead enter, and some, reportedly,
return with profound messages and memory
or what it is like beyond.

This spirit wants to leave.
It wants the rendering to end.
It wants the watchers to allow it
to go into the light, begging,
Please, let me go, I’m tired, I want to rest.

The departing spirit wants to tell them
there is no turning back.
Those were all false reports.

But the body cannot speak. It is pulling apart.
The body is transforming
into an empty shell like snake skin.

Already, parts flutter off, loose brittle fragments.

Martin Willitts Jr is a retired Librarian. He has over 20 chapbooks and over 10 full-length collections. His forthcoming full-lengths include The Uncertain Lover (Dos Madras Press) and The News From the Slow Country (Aldrich Press).

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