What Went Down

Death’s misty trail
forged on your face
fears and isolation.

Masons and Smiths etched parentheses ’round your mouth,
the eleven between your brows steeling your days—
3,650, give or take a few.
You never quite leapt with the years.

Hubris has five sides.
It lives in a glass of Scotch and falls
short on the bathroom tiles shattered,
(When you collapsed, did she watch you die?
No patron saint climbing heaven’s stairwell to save you, stranger.)

24 May.
Going down.

Butterflies yellow like ribbons in the breeze punctuating
that rectangular death that slid not-so-neatly beside his mother.
My grandmother.

24 November.
Your baby
he will never meet.

Circles on a calendar.

Capitals and ellipses,

11 August sixty-two times,
followed by an eleven in fall.

Circles on a calendar.


Cloudless days
And you wonder,
What went  down?

© Natalie Aristy and Sixteen Stories 2011. All rights reserved.

(Image: “Yellow Butterfly” © Joanna McCluskey.)


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