Our poem of the week is Jane Burn’s haunting and ethereal poem, The House of Blossomed Bones, available in issue three of Eye Flash Poetry.
The House of Blossomed Bones
Hallstatt Charnel House
When I die, I hope that someone
comes to wraith my head. When I am
just sockets and holes, the gentle
light of the quiet charnel house
will soothe the cut of bladed cheeks,
once plump. Come, kin and scrape my skull
from sod – leave it to be licked clean
by weather, let it bleach beneath
rain and sun. May wind scald the last
cling of morsels, moonlight become
a chalk cloche on its bulge. Pick up
a brush – paint me a crown of oak,
of ivy. Mark a lover’s rose –
oleander winding, circlet
of a bride about my peeled dome.
Add my name – once, a person wrapped
about this glabrous thing. Write there
who I was. Clasp it in the scoop
of your palms, bear it, light and thin
to the Beinhaus. Find it a place
on the smooth wooden shelves, settle
it down. Look with pity before
you leave at the way the candles
gibber a hymn of their own, sweet
along the snug of the arched roof.
Do not fear for my loneliness –
here are many, jaws ready set
for chatter, seated bone to bone.
Ready to spend eternity,
this group of assembled planets,
we are reduced to what humans
really are – underneath our meat,
this rattling, gap-tooth, smooth-balled thing
chiseled into a chapel’s dark.
Look to our eyes – they are lidless.
Where our minds used to be, is peace.