Modern Funeral

Michael Mark

I don’t ever pick up my phone with the intention 
to communicate with the dead 
but there you are—

your phone numbers, email, birthday, 
solid as ever; your profile picture 
above the unreal blues

and white domes of Santorini, 
bringing me back to the coffee shop, 
where I first tapped in the information, 

when it was clear our relationship 
was moving on.

Your words were our last. 
It was the pause I remember, me waiting 
for you to hang up, imagining you

doing the same, wherever you were—
a different pause than our sick-in-love, 
“You hang up...” “…No—you.” 

This was a clinical ceremony—the couple 
at the attorney’s office, having signed the divorce 
papers, not knowing what else to do 

after a lifetime together, shaking hands. 
I Google a prayer 
to forward to whomever 

might keep your phone, holding you 
in the technology, as I had.
But uncertain where you stand on God 

these days, I don’t press Send. Instead,
I imagine you, your eyes hesitating 
over the Delete button, 

as we share this pause, the loving kind, 
my thumb hovering.