If I Should Find

By Amy Nocton

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– dedicated to Larry Fagan


If I find
your bones, one day,
caressed by time
and cradled
by your children’s
I will know
them for the laughter of others
reverberating within.

With words
still unknown,
I will whisper
my admiration,
my worship
and my sorrow
into their hollow.

I will marvel at their clarity.

Like a ponderous pachyderm
before the remains of kin,
I will touch
the scaffolding
now untethered
by life’s slow decay
of tissue
and other matter.

I will gently
the soles of my feet,
against their skeletal
surfaces softly

Weighed down by life no more
their lightness of being
escapes all earthly

I close my eyes.
You offer an invitation
and I accept
your dance,
happy calavera.

Amy Nocton

Author’s Note: “If I Should Find” was written as an attempt to cope with the immense sorrow I felt at losing my colleague, Larry Fagan, when I was at RHAM High School in Hebron, CT. He had taught in the room adjacent to mine for years, and there was always a boisterous, laughter-filled ruckus emanating from the other side of the shared classroom wall. He died too young, and was buried in a favorite tie that was decorated with his children’s handprints. Larry was beloved by his family, his students, and his colleagues. I felt a huge void after his death, and I wanted to pay homage to the amazing, positive, smiling person that he was.