Diana Anhalt

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  • icon I Suppose When Death



Diana Anhalt, originally from Mexico, is the author of A Gathering of Fugitives: American Political Expatriates in Mexico 1947-1965 (Archer Books), three chapbooks—among them Second Skin (FutureCycle Press) and Lives of Straw (Finishing Line Press) in addition to essays, short stories and book reviews in both English and Spanish. She placed first in the Georgia Poetry Society’s contest for their annual collection, and her work was nominated for this year’s Pushcart Prize. Her book, Because There Is No Return (Passager Press), released in August, is now in its second printing.

I Suppose When Death

     elbows its way through your door and presses
     her mouth to your ear, she’ll jumpstart memories,
     send your thoughts pivoting like a sunflower

following light to, perhaps, your first taste of pineapple
or the day you mastered, at last, the dead man’s float,
fell in love, scored a goal, bungled one. In one single life

     such an excess of possible firsts: The time you wrote
     your name in wet concrete, lost your stride, an old friend,
     your front tooth. And if, as promised, your life flashes

in front of your eyes, do you get to omit the things you’d chosen
to forget? Those smudged fingerprints of failure and the words
you’d neglected to swallow? Of course, like the moth

     that remembers the flame, you may return instead
     to the last time, fingers buried deep in damp soil,
     you breathed in its scent, planted a magnolia

or opened your mouth to rain, shared the bath with a lover,
finished reading the story you wanted never to end.