walt whitman and the legal composting of the dead (20210411)

out of the ground
i steal a bucket of soil
from a previously dug grave
now a healed over wound
in the loamy earth

my theft is to make
a small amount of clay
not even a handful
an artistic experiment

(this is science)
extraction
solution
excitation
suspension
filtration
refinement

(this is magic)
ritual
burial
inspiration
reformation
resurrection

my breath is the breath
of my ancestors
and yours
my hands dig and mix and form
this clay
this body of our ancestors
what whitman has assumed
i have assumed