I propose an elegy
the shape of
a cairn for my father.
with 63 wooden objects,
one for each year of his life
One object is the cube.
Some cubes made by laminating wood
with paper, fabric, tool dip,
tobacco leaves, eagle feathers.
Another object is the box.
Some boxes made into bird houses,
filled with neon fishing line.
White cotton bolls.
Some boxes made of twigs,
filled with broken bottles, shotgun shells.
Some as shadowboxes stuffed with
charcoal, shredded newspaper,
cigarettes. Random bones, maybe.
Most objects have language
on them via
carving, writing, painting, etching,
embroidering, burning, incense, spell.
Some have language on paper
floating on their surfaces.
The elegy is anchored by a heart,
a lump of stoneware
spiked with 63 nails,
that bubbles with red glaze
& rests on a shallow bed of ash.