The undertaker doesn’t warn you
about the consistency of the ashes.
Not like those of say, a cigarette.
Scattering them will not be like
when you used to blow into
the ashtrays at your grandparents’
house as if blowing the fluff off
of dandelions gone to seed, for
which you were gently scolded.
The human form is difficult to destroy
utterly. When fragments of your father's
bones thud against the ground of his wishing
forgive yourself for the shock, the momentary
turn in your stomach. When you see that his ash
has caught onto your shoes and leggings and skin
Come to see this as your first and only embrace.
Copyright © 2021, Liz Howard, Letters in a Bruised Cosmos, McClelland & Stewart