Wednesday, August 29, 2018

In Memoriam

God, my death was so embarrassing.
It wouldn’t have been so bad if there were no afterlife,
no consciousness or soul to remember it,
but here I am.
Did you know that nausea can be a symptom
of a heart attack in women?
I sure didn’t!
I vomited into a garbage can in the middle of
a mandatory company meeting.
(I was pretty sure it was just their crappy catered lunch.)
Everyone stared at me, open-mouthed,
too shocked to be disgusted.
Theresa, the self-appointed office mom,
put her arm around my shoulders and said,
“Oh honey, are you okay?  Let’s get you to the bathroom.”
I kind of waved her off,
her perfume inciting new swells of nausea,
then I stumbled to the women’s room in the hallway.
I took off my button-down shirt to rinse it off in the sink,
then I got very light-headed and collapsed.
I was kind of watching the whole scene from above my body,
which was a sign that things weren’t going very well for me then.
My worst coworker, Rebecca, was the one who found me,
lying on the floor, in my bra,
vomit-stained shirt crumpled at my side.
She came in the bathroom with her little toadie, Sharon.
“Oh my God,” she said, “we should, like, call 911, right?”
To Sharon’s credit, she tried performing a half-hearted CPR
while Rebecca ran for help.
And the paramedics eventually came,
and there was a whole crowd of people in the bathroom
and just outside the bathroom,
to see me wheeled out on a gurney.
People gasping,
Nicole was crying…oh Christ, really?
The EMTs were going to town with their chest compressions,
but it was all for naught,
and I didn’t even make it to the ER.
So the manner of my passing was highly unsatisfactory,
and then my over-religious sister
got her hands on my funeral service,
and the less said about that, the better.
My brother brought that girlfriend of his, of course,
who managed to make the whole thing about her.
And it was pretty much exactly what I would expect from all of them,
but they say funerals are for the living.
At least my good friend, Christina, tree-hugger that she is,
managed to get my cremains turned into a tree,
however they do that.
So the bits and pieces of what was once me are a tree now,
and that’s nice because I always wanted to
get outside more.


  1. This is so relatable! I had a near-death experience once, and it was ... very disappointing. My last words were so lame (they don't tell you how you will lack the energy to come up with something poetic when you are about to die!) And then right before losing consciousness I pinched a nurse's a** (and I'm not sure if I really did that or just dreamed it) and it was such an embarrassing final act. Fortunately I didn't die, so I'm gonna try to do better next time!

  2. Oh my goodness! I'm glad you're still around to tell the tale!