Michael Dennis (1956-2020)
   - the last day of the year, 31st of December.
my friend, the poet Michael Dennis died.
my friend died

the next day I got the phone call
no new year for him, happy or otherwise
he died at 4:30 PM
this time of year that is when the sun is setting
the sun set on the day
the sun set on the year
the sun set on his miraculous life

we are all going to die
me and you and everyone we love
some day

on the 1st of January everyone says happy new year
my friend has died
I shovel show from the front steps
my friend has died
I shovel snow from the walkway
my friend has died
words run through my mind
Iím talking silently to myself
words emerge
my friend has died

I shovel snow in the cold air
in bright winter sunlight
I shovel snow and think about words
and dying
where do words come from?
where do words go, when they are not spoken?
where do words go, if they are not written?
where to poets go when they die?

the sun sparkles on the snow
the snow is white and light and cold
the sky is blue, incredible
I shovel snow and breathe
incredulous and grateful.

© Dan Sharp