by Jennifer Schomburg Kanke
My mother wants the dead to go away,
tired of how they pop up among the list of the living,
in whatever the last profile picture they selected
not knowing it was the last. Perhaps next to last
because they’d been thinking about giving up
social media, eventually, or perhaps not everything,
perhaps just the games
of colorful chains and timers,
hoping for a boost from friends.
There’d be one more picture before that, right?
One more after they’d lost the weight,
one more after they got those partials,
one more after the tan lines faded,
but certainly not the last, forever floating
on a yellow raft in someone’s backyard pool.
Jennifer Schomburg Kanke, originally from Columbus, Ohio, lives in Tallahassee, Florida, where she edits confidential government documents. Her work has appeared in Prairie Schooner, Pleiades, and Drunk Monkeys. She serves as a reader for Emrys.
This poem previously appeared in Drunk Monkeys.