All My Kinfolk Lay in Jars

I’ve heard of people buried
At sea, or in their cars;
While most rest in a graveyard,
My kinfolk lay in jars.

There’s jars stored in the kitchen,
Stuck anywhere they’ll fit.
And some are in the backroom,
My favorite place to sit.

My momma’s in the gold one
There on the mantelpiece;
Bubba’s on the bookshelf,
That’s where he rests in peace.

My cousin’s on the table,
Under the stereo;
Aunt Norma joined her last year,
Hated to see her go.

Joe-Joe’s in the bedroom, in
His little rocking chair,
How long that he’s been rockin’
Is neither here nor there.

My daddy’s in a bottle
That whiskey used to hold;
He never really cared much
For silver, brass or gold.

Great Granny sits atop the
Piano in the hall;
A doily underneath so’s
Her jar won’t slip and fall.

I never bothered buying
A Jar for Uncle Ed,
If there be truth to tell you,
I’m rather glad he’s dead.

So I just dumped his ashes
Out back, under the stars;
He won’t be a’ mingling with
My kinfolk, in their jars.

My pets are not forgotten,
Each have their own jar too;
That’s Scamp there in the red one,
And Rebel’s jar is blue.

Whenever someone leaves me,
They never go too far;
‘Cept me, that’s all my kinfolk
So far laid up in jars.

And when the Good Lord calls me,
To join Him in the stars,
I’ve no kinfolk left to lay
My ashes in a jar.

© 2014 The Poet Darkling™

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Published by: The Poet Darkling

The Poet Darkling is an award-winning poet, lyricist, author, editor, and freelance writer. She is currently working on her fifth poetry and monologue anthology, as well as her memoirs. In 2013, The Poet Darkling had the distinct honor of writing an introduction and closing poem for the short story anthology, “Broken Spokes along the Way,” by author Vance R. Farrell. She is also an esteemed member of several writer’s groups, including Writers-Network, and All Poetry, and was featured in the All Poetry anthology “Rewrite Sunlight” in 2017. Born in Chicago, Illinois, The Poet Darkling currently resides in Northeast Tennessee with her family, her pet black widow spider (whom she calls “Walter”), her imaginary muse (whom she hasn’t named), and her many diverse personalities. Since her childhood, The Poet Darkling has survived all manner of physical and sexual abuse, as well as mental illness, drug addiction, and long-term homelessness, and her poetry reflects this. With a steady voice, diverse subject matter, and the singular intent of helping others not only survive the darkness, but thrive there. The Poet Darkling appeals to a wide range of readers. She speaks for the traumatized soldier, the weary mother, the confused teen, the abandoned senior, the disenfranchised minority, the serial killer, and anyone who has suffered heartbreak, addiction, abuse, mental illness, and even the sting of death – and all in perfect rhyme and meter…or not. Following her own doctrine of “Live first; learn later,” The Poet Darkling is currently working on her M.A. in Creative Writing/English, with a concentration in Poetry at Southern New Hampshire University, where she also earned her B.A. in Creative Writing, with a concentration in Poetry and a minor in Professional Writing, graduating summa cum laude in 2017. The Poet Darkling is proud to be a member of the Sigma Tau Delta (Alpha Pi Psi) and Alpha Sigma Lambda (Sigma Psi) honor societies. When she is not writing, or plotting her bid for Poet Laureate of the United States, The Poet enjoys talking to herself, wandering around aimlessly and poking dead critters with sticks.

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