In Memoriam(ish)

Death says to me: soon enough, he will call collect.
(Only pay phones in hell.) (No burners?)
But the phone companies killed all that years ago –
"Operator? Operator?" A bot buzzes in the receiver
like a dying fly.

My cell phone screen is cracked with jokes
and I don't recognize this grim reaper's smile
staring back at me from the lock widget –
gives new meaning 
to saving face. 

Saved by the bell, or ringtone. Sitting out on the deck –
listening to woodpeckers' hard words with bark beetles.
"I hear you knocking, but you can't come in."
I skipped Morse code in Boy Scouts
along with Lifesaving and Bugling

Which means I can't play taps for you, my friend –
only these fingerprints
on Gorilla glass, tracks in the sand
draining down the silicon hourglass.
If survival is eulogy enough, we are still here.

*”Death Calling Collect” – Don Tracy, 1976 (among other versions/sources)

The Sunday Muse

22 thoughts on “In Memoriam(ish)

  1. This out me in mind of Vanessa Mae’s version of “the Devil’s Trill”, which, is you listen hard, has a disconnected phone line at the beginning and end. This link has it at the beginning, but I don’t hear it at the end. On my cd the song ends with a horribly lonesome busy signal that sounds like it’s in outer space. The Devil’s Trill, if you don’t know, was from a dream a composer had–Giuseppe somebody–who dreamed that the devil came to him and played it, He woke up and tried to write down all he could remember. Crazy stuff.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ah, wow, that was terrific. Thank you! Yeah, I didn’t want to close as dark as I started. There is still some residual optimism in me, LOL! Thought you might like the bugle line.


  2. No burners, a cell phone screen cracked with jokes, and saved by the bell..some great word play in this Qbit! Dark but clever and still made me smile within the lines. So glad you joined in this week!!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. a deeper, darker one from you full of references and tangential thoughts, well-woven together with the usual offerings of delicious lines
    “Sitting out on the deck –
    listening to woodpeckers’ hard words with bark beetles.”


  4. The images here are all of a disconnection that anticipates isolation–and of course, death is the ultimate and final isolation. Too many good lines to quote, but I liked the way you flipped the feels around, from death on the line to “..My cell phone screen is cracked with jokes..” to “..woodpeckers’ hard words with bark beetles..” to paint this post-modern epitaph.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. “My cell phone screen is cracked with jokes
    and I don’t recognize this grim reaper’s smile
    staring back at me from the lock widget –
    gives new meaning
    to saving face.” Love this! I need so humor in this dark grief I’m living.

    Liked by 1 person

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