Wednesday, 9 June 2021

What Amount?

by Michelle Fulkerson

The smell of cremated bones
wafting over perfume and lily,
the air is stale and sharp.
I need to compose myself
need to get a grip
shake this death from my bones
uncoil this aching grief from my soul.
I wear a dress of mascara and tears.
If I receive one more casserole I’ll snap.

10,500 dollars to say goodbye 
goodbye to what? 
A corpse? 
He’s no longer my father
or her husband
or his friend.
10,500 dollars to say goodbye
to a man no longer a man. 

* * * * *

Editor's note: Following Michelle’s death, her mother and editor, Julie Fulkerson, discovered that Michelle had begun compiling her poems into a book, which she titled, “Through Adversity to the Stars.”  She completed the book Michelle started, searching through her journals and her google drive for additional poems, reflections, and short stories. She hopes to one day publish Michelle’s book.

Michelle Fulkerson fought her way into the world at just 23 weeks gestation. Against the odds, she survived and thrived. Michelle loved reading, writing and music. She began writing poetry and short stories at age 12. Around that same time, Michelle began struggling with anorexia, anxiety, and depression. She kept a journal where she wrote with poignant honesty regarding her mental health struggles. Michelle wrote up until her death, just 4 months shy of her 18th birthday.

1 comment:

  1. Sad sad bio behind the poem, which assaults the senses with an overriding wave of bitterness.