Passing Certain Estates

Dermot Bolger

On the night that they announce his death
Those of us who live in the homes he built
Will gather outside the gates of his mansion.

 

We will carry his oak coffin on our shoulders
In a silent procession through every estate
Where he ignored bylaws, left roads incomplete.

 

We shall dig a grave to half its proper depth
And lower his casket as far as it will fit,
Swearing to return soon and finish the task.

 

His coffin shall be left jutting out on a slope,
And on the subsiding headstone will be writ:
“Death has no short cuts, no sharp practices,
I lie as I left you, betrayed by empty promises.”

 

 

Passing Certain Estates

 

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