Mocking fame, I do erase the names on graves
And sobbing gruellishly begin to use the names myself. I go
To visit my new grandchildren; several tendrils
Of a foreign passion mark upon my daughter’s house,
But faces are repaired by thoughts repocked
By words upon me from their shedding souls, and
The children are so well; my children are well,
For they had got to say what they had not.
Into town, I draw a corpse along new soul’s extremities
And then such doggish years repose the grief of all my fathers;
The same now dissipate the plight of all my mourning mothers,
“I have come home again,” I say to them, “I have come home.
Be, be at rest — you may die before me now.”
Thus in blush of memories, and old or broken eyes
Do I become to them the love I was
But now I know of what I’ve done and I
—considering new sins and how to freshen my atonements,
Return toward the graves to learn why I’d done what I did,
And though I remembered all my names,
Few recalled their reasoning, and most recalled their pain.
Pearce Green is an undergraduate studying creative writing at the University of Iowa, whose work has been published in Crashtest Mag and East Jasmine Review, as well as under the names Feston Altus and Lester Petillo in Eunoia Review, Clementine Unbound, Five:2:One, as well as Academy of the Heart and Mind, and Plum Tree Tavern.