I patted the earth
As lovingly as one could with the huge shovel of the excavator.
I shut off the rumbling motor.
My bones rattled on, no longer able to work but not quite able to rest either.
I was finished.
I had now buried everyone I knew,
And some I didn’t.
No stones marked the graves.
What for? There was no one left to read them.
No tears washed my face.
Crying was a luxury for those who would be comforted.
I was too tired to comfort myself.
I closed the door to the shed where I had parked the excavator
And almost laughed as I observed myself lock it.
But old habits are hard to break,
I had warned them about the carriers,
Alarmed as they dropped off one by one.
I never warned them about me.
To say I didn’t know is no excuse.
I didn’t want to know.
I never tried to know.
Even when I did know.
Now I have been convicted to live.
Two other carriers help each other join their friends.
I cannot. I must serve my sentence.
I slowly returned to the shed that serve as my lodging.
I went inside
And locked the door.