Death
Joy Ladin
It's always summer now. Thunderstorms clatter past, 
one leaf adds its green to another
until the trees turn black. A starved fox loiters in a narrow road

swallowed by woods 
bristling with wings and webs, teeth, roots,
and many, many legs. 

Nothing can stop growing, eating and being eaten, 
the earth is loamed 
with flesh and skeleton, 

furred with forest, a veritable Eden
where nothing bad can ever happen, nothing 
is lost, no one vanishes. The days 

keep growing longer, night shrinks 
to the paring of a fingernail, eternity beams down 
on its favorite planet, the living planet of death.
Joy Ladin, Gottesman Professor of English at Yeshiva University, has published six books of poetry, including Forward Fives award winner Coming to Life and Lambda Literary Award finalist Transmigration; her seventh collection, Impersonation, is due out in 2015. Her memoir of gender transition, Through the Door of Life:  A Jewish Journey Between Genders, was a 2012 National Jewish Book Award finalist,and she has also published a study of American poetry, Soldering the Abyss: Emily Dickinson and Modern American Poetry. Her work has appeared in many periodicals, including American Poetry Review, Southern Review, Prairie Schooner, Parnassus: Poetry in Review, Southwest Review, Michigan Quarterly Review, and North American Review, and has been recognized with a Fulbright Scholarship.


more by Joy Ladin:
Fireworks in the Graveyard
Kindness