Samantha Brooks

When I Die

When my soul makes its journey home
What shall my body endure?
Drained of blood, pumped with chemicals
Face sewn shut, orifices stuffed
Plugged with cotton to keep the maggots hidden away
Their presence too much for western sensibilities
Painted like a whore in a bid to hide the rot
Locked away in a concrete vault
Beneath the manicured Ridgeview lawn
Or thrown into the cleansing flame
All alone, with only a laborer by my side
My body reduced to fragile bone
Cremulated down to dust
Recognizable bones remind too much of our mortality
Dying without death

But I do not want this sanitized goodbye.
Burn me, yes, but watch me burn
Build a pyre and watch me ablaze under the Appalachian sky
Bury me beneath the dirt
No concrete nor metal
No chemicals in my veins
Let my body feed the earth
Let me fertilize your garden
Let my end feed the masses
Take my body to the wilds
Let the vultures, maggots, fungi
Feed upon my rotting flesh
Send my body down the river

Samantha Brooks is a senior at Bridgewater College in Bridgewater, Virginia. She is studying psychology and plans to be a funeral director. She has been writing poetry in her free time since she was in elementary school.