Unpacking a Library

by David Wheatley

i.m. D. O’D.

      Someone today will
not be writing soon-to-be
      cancelled cheques, eating
a last sandwich, or circling
posthumous calendar dates –

      time unfillably
idling instead in your wake
      in a rented house
and not one book of yours to
hand, not a borrowed word in

      explanation of
death catching your eye. Today
      for the living will
not mean a last look at the
world or weather forecasts for

      their own funerals
but survival’s non-event,
      mute spirit haunting
an empty cage, unspoken
for in so much voicelessness;

      until, dark-garbed, two
removers come to the door
      bearing load after
load of – steady there – M, N,
O’Callaghan, Conor, O’

      Callaghan, Julie,
O’Driscoll, Ciaran and – ah,
      so there you are then –
O’Driscoll, Dennis, lifted
carefully free of the box.