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Leave Taking


i.m. Sten Söderström


The dead, we say, are the departed.  They

pass on, they pass away, they leave behind

family, friends, the whole of humankind—

They have gone on before.  Or so we say.


But could it be the opposite is true?

Now, as I stand here in the graveled drive

at moonrise, unaccountably alive,

I have the sense that it is we, not you,


who are departing, spun at breakneck speed

through space and time, while you stay where you are—

intimate of dark matter and bright star—

and watch the brilliant, faithless world recede.


Bill Coyle



© 2001; originally printed in Dark Horse.  Reprinted by
permission of the author.

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