A Spring Funeral in 2020

A farmer and son sit in their living room.
The light is dimmed, curtains half closed.
Three collies are curled up by the coal fire.
Outside, a landrover casts a shadow
onto the woodchip wallpaper.

They are both wearing suits, a black tie
is painted onto their shirts. Collars creased,
and cuffs have a yellow tinge from age.
A laptop sits on the coffee table as they watch
an empty graveyard. Birds sing. Sun shines.

A priest holds a book. His eyes lost in the absence.
Two mugs of tea allow steam to reach for the artex ceiling.
They both hold each other’s hands, tears fall
as melting ice water. The father tilts back his head.
Gargles away his marriage.

The son makes a fist from his other hand.
Then he releases and closes the laptop. And they sit
listening to the logs burning on the fire.


Gareth Culshaw lives in Wales. His first collection, The Miner, was released by FutureCycle Press in 2018. FutureCycle will also publish his second collection, Shadows of Tryfan, in 2020. A Best of the Net nominee, Culshaw is currently an MFA student at the Manchester Metropolitan University.