Burial Smoke

Shane T. Wyman


I let my yellowing fingertips burn

To keep him at ease,

Adding both light and ash

Telephone poles and bridge railings.


He comes and goes in fits of rage

This nervous conscience, second self

That desires know to how the grass

Felt when I smother, bug squash

The last millimeter of orange glow out


He comes and goes as the people

Yes the people, do the same

Telling me I am better off alone

Whispering it to me

                                Your fault-

Not good enough-

Better off dead-


I light a cigarette to keep this man

At bay- angry and screaming in a void

Drunk punched open to the nearest door

Some type of self destruction to prove

Men don’t cry-

I know I deserve this


I feel each degree as the ash nears

The filter, exhaling the heat fades

To where you name used to live

I inhale fully- letting the smoke

Burn as I feel it tingle my lips

And forget.



Shane T. Wyman is a New Hampshire native. He is receiving a bachelor’s degree in English at Northern Vermont University-Johnson, where he has served as treasurer to The Writer’s Club, and as an editor for Pamplemousse (ed. 5.1). He currently resides in Vermont.