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goodbye, my love

"Living well is the best revenge."
--George Herbert, from
Jacula Prudentum (1651)

an old proverb tells us that
living well is the best revenge

but for those of us
who can't afford to live well
the next best thing is to die well

and leave something behind
to be remembered by--
perhaps a good epitaph will do.

someday, beneath a shady maple or elm
at ease in the earth's undying embrace
you'll find me, having the last laugh

the modest grave marker above
immodestly aiming for immortality
with my previously unspoken last words:


if it makes you feel better
you can call me an asshole
one last time as you leave
your plastic flowers

taking your thoughts
of life insurance policies
and other grave concerns
with you as you go

and please, don't forget
to convey my thanks
to the kind mortician
on your way out.

© by Jack T. Marlowe

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