Old St. Adalbert Cemetery
developed in the late 1870s
Even death dies here at old St. Adalbert’s.
Rain and frost have wiped away the names
and dates from limestone grave markers
as ants and grasshoppers scratch their own
obituaries where once human ones stood.
Grave renters lost their squatter’s rights
after a year if someone bought the plot
and simply pushed the renter down
with no record of who he or she was.
Lovers must bundle two feet and centuries
apart. Girls who once swung their corn silk
hair and flashed quicksilver eyes can flirt now
only when rain dissolves their muddy bed curtains.
Wealthy souls bragged they could journey
into eternity above ground in Pullman-like
berths but today moths tend their satin sheets
and doors have not squeaked in a century.
The brown leaves of autumn flutter and
fall and are mistaken for sparrows
by the St. Adalbert dead hoping
God’s eye has not forgotten them.