The Lord’s Hospital Does Not Meet Sanitation Standards This building is all white linoleum And faces that do not fit the conversation. I am slumped against flecked walls. There’s a prayer in my ear But I cannot find it in my throat. This voice is only mine When it is screaming. There is something to be said of finding god In a funeral home three days After spitting on the name in a hospital basement. To bury my mother is nothing Compared to swallowing newfound faith. She’s dead, after all And what is there to process in this? Shift of thought cannot hold a match To a set of grey veins and a dead metronome. How lucky am I, choking on new religion On the floor of a funeral home— Once more given three days to find god. The prayer does not end in amen. Neither will I.   Pop Punk Requiem: A Burial Request The funeral hymns are so slow. I told them I wanted a rhythm That made me seem more alive Than when I actually was. I told them to leave god out of it. They wanted to bury me near a church. I told them the baptism waters Would seep right through the soil, Would suffocate the new life Right out of the silk. I told them to invite no one to the wake. Celebrate my body in solitude— Use only memory and skepticism To craft a coffin, One that stands up to all the hatred Hardened ground harbors. I told them that none of these rituals Mattered to me, That flowers don’t make a difference To a cadaver. The funeral hymns are so slow, Just like the memories they carry And the grief they process. Let us skip to the coda. — Danielle Kotrla is currently a student at the University of North Texas studying English and philosophy. Her work has been featured in the North Texas Review and Sonder Midwest. Her first chapbook, This Is Not an Act of Creation, was recently the winner of Texas Christian University’s second annual chapbook contest.
Artwork by: Claire Loader
A writer and photographer, Claire Loader was born in New Zealand and spent several years in China before moving to County Galway, Ireland. Recently published in Crannóg, Dodging The Rain and Pendora, she spends her days seeking enchantment in ruins. You can find her work here:
Links Instagram: allthefallingstones Facebook: allthefallingstones Twitter: @msloader

two poems

by Danielle Kotrla

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