On Laying Down the Body of A Loved One


This poem reflects a timeless theme of humanity: death. The poem may appear grim, but it documents the internal monologue of a person coming to terms with the death of their loved one in war and may be interpreted by anyone struggling with accepting the way things are. Poetry and art speak to universal themes, and this work explores a way of coping against tides that seem to overrun you. I am sure university students will know this feeling well.

Bright mountain, fall away,
Leave a scar on the earth in your place.
Bring back my beloved
Slumbering now, the bedfellow of worm,
Clay and dandelion root.
Where once the soul beat flourishing,
All left is but bone and pallid stuff
Littered among gold and earthly affects,
Little good they did him. The sword is now
Gathering rust, each year a few more specks,
The sword that should have saved him.
A thousand years from now
When raiders find that burial mound,
Sink the hole and dive in, no skin will they find.
Not the skin I touched, nor the skin I loved.
Just the metal chunked and rotten,
And the bones of my beloved bound amongst the clay.
Mackenzie Akins

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