I pray to die snuggled in bed

by friends and good family,

by singing friends who will remember me dancing.

Not to die on the street in that sideways rain of bullets

in a classroom facing that angry kid

in a bomb shelter knowing the end

of the world I had dreaded since the failure of the Peaceful Atom to suck back

into itself all radiation,

all weapons of mass delusion, all penultimate

petulance, all the speciesidal probabilities,

all delusion.


Just let me die of peace, instead,

in bed alone or in the woods,

then feed me to the hungry, deserving bear

or the gorgeous, swooping

buzzard, that lonely and wrongfully hated creature

who has the patience and decency to wait for its prey

to say goodbye out of love.


Cycle me back into life immediately

on those black wings

who cup upside down

the spiral-inducing thermals.


On these I will rise,

learn to fly

become sky.