Setting fire to the paper dim sum,
watching the ashes of joss money,
floral incenses mix with facsimile
of cell phones, glass houses,
yachts full of dead communists.
For all the dead one loved, and
the dead without family: imagine
going to the stream and never
talking water for thousands
of years: what jokes the Ghosts
would have if their mouths were
not caked with dust and puckered
for beyond the possible of syllables
making sense. A man asks his
future descendants to burn a pint
of beer, an entire bank, and most
the things that made him hungry,
dead, and incorporeal in the first
place: What we turn to ash is
often what we believe. The ghosts
are hungry, all is fire anyway,
what is a little more burning?
C Derick Varn is a poet, teacher, and theorist. He currently edits for Former People. He has a Master of Fine Arts in Poetry at Georgia College and State University where he served as assistant editor for Arts and Letters: A Journal of Contemporary Arts. He has served as managing editor for the now defunct Milkwood Review. He won the Frankeye Davis Mayes/Academy of American Poets Prize in 2003 and his poetry has appeared at Unlikely Stories 2.0, Full of Crows, Writing Disorder, JMWW, Clutching at Straws, Xenith, Piriene’s Fountain, and elsewhere. He currently abides in Cairo, Egypt and his nomadic tendencies have found him living in South Korea and Northern Mexico as well.