Today's poem is by Oliver de la Paz

Dear Empire,

These are your dead. They are buried above ground, so it is hard to say they are
buried. Often, they are among us: a parasol on a sunny day, a partnerless shoe.

The lupine shudder with every gust. Their purple buds thread up like kitchen
brushes from the graves. There are many gardens here. There are many feet
wearing uneven treads on the soil.

If you took a photo negative of me right now, you would see the heat outlines
of ghosts. The upright caskets are violent with their exhaust. This is me placing
flowers on a stone. This is me besides the wisteria, twisted around the gate's
trellis. These are your solar flares.

Copyright © 2010 Oliver de la Paz All rights reserved
from The Asian American Literary Review
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission

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