I-5 Threnody

Define me, archaeologist, when

Someday you unearth my body here,

As “homo sedens,” sitting man,

Attached by arms in rigor locked

To rusted steering wheel.

I suspect you’ll find me here

In driver’s seat, with dusted eyes,

A bored expression frozen on

My desiccated face.

I’m dying in a traffic jam, with

Butts to headlights all the way

From Allentown to Fife.

I’m driving my eventual

Sarcophagus, far fancier than Tut’s.

For cerements I'll have the weight of

Cares, embalming me within

The bitter heat of nature’s purest


I feed my boredom with the bread

Of sighs, and wonder just how long

It takes for you to mummify yourself

By willing, like the ancient monks

Devoted to the Bodhisattva’s way.

My patience seems as if it has no point,

Parked as I am upon a road

That of its nature can’t be called

A “place;”

And here my deepest certainty

Informs me I shall surely end my days.

I’m begging, wrapped like Lazarus, for

That bright, thunderous, holy voice

To call me out,

And roll away the stone.


  • Goldfinch60

    Good write, that Holy Voice will call you.

  • Lorna

    Oh my goodness Merry - your command of your writing and the sense of humor in this one is fantastic. I've always had a horror of digging up bodies and this started out so seriously and then took me by surprise! What a laugh but so well done! I'll never sit in a traffic jam again without thinking of this clever.....

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