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This poem is taken from PN Review 240, Volume 44 Number 4, March - April 2018.

Grave Goods Patricia Postgate
You may keep my best bow,
And my drinking cup;
My chequer board, my flower-coronet
And my little cosmetic jars.
They will be no use to me at all.

You must put in the grave with me
These three things.
A small pot of seed-corn;
The long time coming will ask a lot
And not give much.
No concessions are made in the struggle for being,
And strength must be drawn from where it may.
Put with me a silver piece, or a copper or two.
Life does not come free, and creation must be paid for.
There is no knowing what the cost will be,
But cost there will be in sending the cell, the atom,
On their transient and perilous journeys.

A handful of soft wool there must be.
A bonus perhaps, when sustenance is only a precaution
...


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