An Instruction Manual for a Gravedigger.

Step 1: You turn off your emotions,
that constriction in your chest just might
make it difficult for you to dig, when the snow
has covered every inch of the equally marked landscape;
identifiable by names, relationships- by how people saw them.

Step 2: Don’t let the seed of gloom
plant itself in your heart, you don’t need
a growth that cannot be weeded out; the silence
interrupted by the rhythmic thawing of the land need
not be layered with an unhappiness that is not yours to begin with.

Step 3: Along with every clump of soil
that your spade collects from the ground,
say a little prayer; what you are digging it for
will soon melt- the skin will integrate with the soil,
and the evidence of any wrongs the body had done to
anyone else, will cease to exist. Say a prayer that the hurt
are delivered their justice, so that one end doesn’t bring others.

Step 4: Know that each body will return
to haunt you one day, when you are tossing
in bed, late at night, unable to separate yourself
from the fingernails that are scratching your back, hurting
you; their frozen masks of fears, hatred, happiness, forever
etched in your mind like stone, will surround you, try to overcome
you. At that time, close your eyes and hope for forgiveness, from whatever
haunting them; maybe the next night, you’ll sleep tight, having put their demons to rest.

Step5: Remember this, for I know, what
you do is never who you are- don’t let the freshly
covered grave enchant you with its heavy barrenness;
there is nothing immoral of what you do; don’t distance
yourself from the living, or you might as well, dig a grave for your
own self. Plant flowers near the headstone, wait for them to bloom,
learn that no ending is beautiful; it is merely the start of something new.

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