Do Not Want for Ashes

Monet Sutch


You’ve had the thought a thousand times over:
Your mother finding you in a death state,
Purple faced, swaying. Or a mass of stained
Petals floating wide-eyed in the shallow tub.
Thought about the handkerchiefs doused at
Your funeral, the difficult decision to render
You ashes, donate your young leftovers to
Some ambitious medical students, or seal
You up nice and tight it a richly lacquered
Coffin; carnations, candles, and baby photos
Framing your sewn shut eyes. That selfish
Demon of a thought keeping time on his
Drums: do it do it doit doit doitdoitdoitdoit —

Beyond fantasy, beyond the drumming
Temptation to expedite the loss of flesh,
Lives the memory of every friend, every
Lover, every stranger whose Mother did
Find them. Lover swallowed by madness
After seeing bright eyes turn opaque, still.
Every friend who relished their pulse but
Was taken by limp-eyed drunk drivers
Regardless. Death’s impartial arrival
Unpredictable, at best.

I have seen: The eyes of a Father sick with
Mourning, telling the women who was
Behind the wheel – her femur still visibly
Bloated through bandages from compound
Fracture, a machine pumping air into her
Patched, punctured lung – please, do not
Let yourself believe this is your fault.
Asked only one thing of her: tell me, i
Have to know, Did she suffer? Did she
Go quickly? Peacefully?

The thought that comes a thousand times over,
Now, accompanied by that moment.

There is no worse a way to learn to hold
On, unwavering and grateful,
Than to witness a Father
Tenderly resting flowers
On his only



Monet Sutch is a 26 year old student living in Portland Oregon. Writing and literature have been sources of sanctuary and safety for Monet since they were a child. Their work focuses on family, identity, recollection of trauma through different lenses, the music of language, and using curiosity as a necessary tool to approach all things existential, ethereal, and human.