burial of 2004

by k. lynn johnson

we put her in a green casket,
the kind that only comes from
a kelp forest or a cypress grove
where the fog gets caught
between the branches. those are
the only types of green i know,
can’t tell you much about the kind
that grew from the roots
that settled in before she was born,
the kind that clusters
out by the pigs or
the kind that gets fertilized
by the outhouse, or
the kind that grew into flames
the morning she was in charge
of warming the water for her bath.
no, don’t know much about the green
that greets you on the other coast
as you come down through the clouds
into a city of promises and no kin,
the kind of endless green you escape to
when cigarettes won’t do and
the ocean is too big and blue.

k.lynn johnson is a queer black kid from the bay area. they recently graduated from Brown University with a degree in Africana Studies. they live in Brooklyn.

Photo by: Ana Prundaru