In the Hospice Chamber
When we slip into Eternity
we do so alone.
The cosmos does not allow
anyone else to slither through
the same portal, simultaneously.
Three other persons
were stationed in the room
when you took leave of us.
Yet you, most social of beings,
existed there, solitary,
Survivors of an Atrocity
When I think of their pain
I imagine a mist,
the drifting ammonia fumes of Venus's surface,
an atmosphere unable to settle,
unable to rise.
A purple-putrid fog
dragging itself across shadowed terrains.
The vapor meanders...gains force,
no one will ever be able to hear.
Austin Alexis won the twentieth annual Naomi Long Madgett Poetry Award
for his first full-length manuscript: Privacy Issues. It will be
published in early 2014 by Lotus Press and distributed by Wayne State
University Press. He has recent work in (or forthcoming in) The Ledge
Poetry and Fiction Magazine, Home Planet News and in the anthology
Rabbit Ears: TV Poems, the first anthology of poetry about television. firstname.lastname@example.org