A Beginner’s Guide To Death by George Anderson

My mother died
one late November afternoon

my young sisters found her
on their bottom bunk bed
with pissed pants.

Returning from my paper route
I slide through the back door
& I was surprised to see Mr White
the old man
my brothers & sisters
heads bowed as if in prayer.

A few days later
my mother lay deep in the womb
of the funeral director
on Sherbrooke Street
her cheeks
tinted with rouge make-up
like a whore.

My father was so distraught
he left the funeral arrangements
to others
the service was hi-jacked by Christians
punctuated by rallying out-of-tune hymns
& the uttering of hollow prayers.

The old man sat directly
behind me during the service
& from time to time
he would edge closer
& whisper into my ear
in a deep growl
than I alone could hear:

Fucking bullshit.’


George Anderson is a teacher, critic, poet and short story writer. He is editor of the blog BOLD MONKEY which reviews small press publications: https://georgedanderson.blogspot.com.au/ His most recent work will be found in Lummox Press Anthology 5, The Blood Machine, In Between Hangovers, the Holy & Intoxicated Publications 2016 Poetry Card Series, Bad Acid Laboratories and the chapbook ‘Teaching My Computer Irony’ in the Epic Rites Press’s Punk Chapbook Series 2016.



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