Housekeeping

For a twenty-minute portion
of each day I tend
to my mortality,

removing the print of dust
from furniture and glass,
gently brushing

the small mass of a cobweb
away from the ceiling
as if it were

a clump of hair loose
on the scalp
of a cancer patient.

I recognize the grungy
dust balls that waltz
ahead of my hands

across the wooden floors
as tiny messengers
of the hereafter: One day

the flimsy remnant
of my ashen shape will rest
on the matter of this world,

briefly gathered in one place
before someone’s breath
will blow it away.

—Published in Red River Review, February ’17

Painting: “Turbulence” by  Ananda   K  esler,  acrylic on canvas, 24"x 36" Thumbnail on Poetry page: “Turbulence, detail” by Ananda Kesler

Painting: “Turbulence” by Ananda Kesler, acrylic on canvas, 24"x 36"
Thumbnail on Poetry page: “Turbulence, detail” by Ananda Kesler