millions of years from now
the descendants of laboratory rats
will drive vehicles powered by what’s left
of humanity, crude pumped from Arlington Cemetery
Cathedral Hill.

compared to the oil the dinosaurs left behind
the fuel created by the end of Man
will seem limitless
even to the rodent

The Ditch

the day my great-granddad died, he dug the hole
by himself, all the way square to six feet deep.
Jumped in the hole, lay down
pulled his gun out and
shot himself clean through the head.
His suicide note just said
“Shouldn’t be too much trouble
just push the dirt back in.”

apparently inspired by this story,
my grandmother’s first husband
hung himself in the bedroom he shared
with his wife, left the door wide open
so anyone coming into the house would first see
his shit and piss-stained body dangling from the ceiling.
My aunt and uncle, aged 5 and 7, found this waiting
when they came home from school.

when my husband talks about suicide
I tell him
make it clean.


Copyright © 2010 Holly Day


Holly Day is a journalism instructor living in Minneapolis, Minnesota, with her husband and two children. Her most recent nonfiction books are Music Theory for Dummies, Music Composition for Dummies, and Walking Twin Cities. Her poetry and fiction has most recently appeared in The Packingtown Review, The MacGuffin, and Midnight Screaming.