Decomposition

Allison Lowe

Concord, CA

Carondelet High School

Poetry

They lay my body in the dirt and muddy it, 

watch and stare as granules of earth cover my limp hands, 

gaze as I am helpless, as I am beginning 

to wonder when a body loses its name 

                                                and becomes a body 

When the moment is that life undoes itself; 

serpentine, recoiling from the grip 

that it once held on its former host, leaving 

sharp marks of residual in the form of rounded indents, 

         of pockmarks that sit stark white and toothless upon dead skin 

 

I am most definitely a body now, 

name torn from my lips, 

a hemorrhage of cold blood throbbing in its wake 

My arms sigh for the

exhale of the earth’s breath upon a fellow cessation; 

a swan song for the parasites burrowed 

                        within the hollows of my veins 

It comes as an exodus 

of soil, of dust, 

           of creation falling within itself

It takes me before sunfall, 

before the red whispers of dawn crawl 

with open mouths towards the sky 

and fall to the unforgiving ground 

                                  burying themselves alive

EDITORIAL PRAISE

The imagery is cold, harrowing, and alive. The ironic inclusion of an exhale as if to represent the speaker taking a fleeting, final breath, is -- well, breathtaking. One can almost see the air shift around them -- a rise and fall that is mirrored by the poem's sinuous form.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Allison Lowe currently attends high school at Carondelet High School in Concord, California. She will graduate in 2022. She lives with her parents and her two dogs. She has previously been recognized by the Scholastic & Writing Awards.