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M. A. Istvan Jr.

Home Death


As much as in this day women require

epidurals for birthing, the dying require

envelopment by pop culture. Pop TV,

for instance, provides programming

through which the dying commune

with the crowd, losing themselves

and thus their fear. The dying hear

the global vocabulary that binds us

all together in an ancient womb:

Nissan Sentra, Crest, Coca-Cola.

To deny the dying of such comforts

is to deny them, in effect, of home.

Dying, one needs home most of all.



Nature, you say always the same thing.

The sameness is not because your shapes,

ever-new, are merely illusions.


The sameness is not just that your shapes

were already there—pre-inscribed,

encrypted—in your earlier states.


If it is true that whoever walks in you

hears the same thing, that thing

likely has to do with sameness and change


in general (or something else very general).

For with such riches enfolded in you

folding out of you, and with such diversity


of the whoevers in question, there must be

so much diversity in what is heard.

But again, you say always the same thing.

home death
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