Arts & CultureCommunityLIFESTYLENEWS

Poetry Corner: DEATH WISH

Introducing a new series of poems by Julian Matthews. Julian is a writer and Pushcart-nominated poet published in The American Journal of Poetry, Autumn Sky Poetry Daily, Borderless Journal, Beltway Poetry Quarterly, Dream Catcher Magazine,  Live Encounters Magazine, Lothlorien Poetry Journal and The New Verse News, among others. He is a mixed-race minority from Malaysia and lived in Ipoh for seven years. Currently based in Petaling Jaya, he is a media trainer and consultant for senior management of multinationals on Effective Media Relations, Social Media and Crisis Communications. He was formerly a journalist with The Star and Nikkei Business Publications Inc


By Julian Matthews

I hope when I go, the morticians avoid giving me a makeover
Frankly, I would object to the fakery
I don’t want me to be gussied up with lipstick or powder
Let my cheeks remain sunken, wrinkles showing, forehead stay creased
Let those who want to peek in, see me for who I am
Authentic and without selfie-ready cosmetics

I am resigned to the way I look
My rough-hewn, scrunched-up face is a rock-climber’s nightmare
My nose is a lovechild between a cauliflower and a ginger root, past their sell-by dates
My crooked teeth are a pile-up of white, and not so white, Fiats on the Federal Highway
Leave me open-mouthed for the morbid, drive-by mourners to gasp,
unable to resist whispering to each other, indignantly:
“They should have shut it!”

Certainly not!
Even in death, I want my pouty, petulant pie-hole wide open
Just in case, I choose to get up and read a poem at my own funeral
Or object to the gushing, over-complimentary, ChatGPT-assisted eulogies
Or just to leave a loud sigh, or sarcastic snort,  or yell,
“Aha, so that’s what you look like, god!”, at the end
It might lift a few spirits

Also, leave my eyes wide open
So I can check myself in the mirror
On the way to heaven
I want to be seen as woke
when I question St Peter over his cock-
crowing denials

First published in Loch Raven Review, Maryland, USA

Show More

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button