Open Casket Closure
by Travis Blair


A bizarre ritual of passing
we Protestants practice
laying out our loved ones’
stiff and empty shells
in dress-up clothes.

She looks so beautiful,
her best friend whispers.
She looks dead, I think
and remember an afternoon
years ago in a motel room
where I watched her shoot up
twenty white crosses dissolved
in a heated silver spoon,
watched her shudder and marveled
at how she survived the rush.

I touch her hand, her puffy
cheek – cold lifeless flesh
not warm or exciting like
the woman who once
shared my bed.

I feel a surreal comfort
knowing she has vacated
this unfamiliar still body.
I hear angels murmur
Elvis has left the building.






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