At Pottery Barn by Jane Rosenberg La Forge

When my mother was reduced
to the stuff that does not burn,
we put her in a river and roots
of her beloved trees of rue, and anywhere
ashes might go unnoticed, in the city
where exile is in the air, flotsam
that rises with the sun. My sister did not
wish to be spread out, so she chose
the bay that took in prisoners
and their grandiose plots.
When the boy who lost both parents
had their funeral, he poured them over
the edge of the pier and people
said they could hear them,
like pocket change or costume jewelry,
as if checked and filed through,
to ensure no one had been stolen.
Imagine your legacy of crowns and
mercury floating as if an obstacle,
a poison, for fish and dolphins.
I am Jewish so burnt offerings will always
be interpreted as waste and consequences,
even when they are light and neon
bulbs the children try to turn off
during the religious lulls.
At the Pottery Barn, now for sale,
white candles with wavy yellow
thing-a-ma-jigs instead of wicks,
to echo the eternal.

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