For the Funeral I Never Went to


In a village in Mahelane, Mozambique

I didn’t cry.
I knew people would think me
heartless for grieving like a statue.
But I wasn’t going to debase you.
Women dressed in black mourning,
Shrieking, wailing, and convulsing
like demon possessed pigs.
There’s a difference between gut wrenching and soul searing.
And none of them honored you
with that screaming silence.
The silence of dew drops drinking grass.

Instead, decomposing you with affected tears,
they feasted selfishly on your life.
Feeding worm bulging bellies with rice;
Like laughing hyenas,
they mangled you down their frenzied throats.

Foreign eyes gushed sincerely,
because that’s what you do
When someone you know dies.
Two weeks isn’t enough time
to boast of knowing you.
But maybe distance is what staged the show.
Because I heard you coughing in the shower;
I saw you shrinking your clothes baggier.
I tasted your sick secret,
but held my breath.
Every object you touched has left
bloodstains on my hands.
But there’s no amount of tears I’d turn on
to wash your prints away.

So while I am
and Heartless
Just know…
I cried for you.


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