add place

How to Search the Ocean for An Ancestor


First, you must seek permission

to return whole

to where you’ve never been


A libation is necessary

Some fragrant blossoms

Voice freely your intentions


What you want

What you need

Why and how


Then call out their names

familiar and strange

Await a response bubbling up


Dip your toe in the Sargasso

Never mind the itch

Swirl it, agitate well


If the wind picks up

throw your arms open to

embrace their touch


You’ll smell them, trust me

They will be justifiably annoyed

for who can blame them


disturbed after all this time

Not release so much as summons

More reckoning for you


The waters may or may not

have calmed around you

Body or vessel, broken or sound


Unrecognizable to each other

you belong nevertheless

to each other, no more other


What they are

What they bring

How and why


If you grasp a message

feel fortified and

understand at once


show gratitude by returning

to their homeland

that is your homeland


Venerate with passion

Sing, dance, and rejoice

Rooted at last


But if no word nor wisdom

is made clear

remember you are not alone


Remember their songs

their spirit faces

the places they left for you


Their lives are yours

Their memories, deep down

are yours, immerse yourself


What are days to the dead? 

If their time is done

Then how do they mark their existence

Or lack thereof?

The uneasy souls pace, their restlessness

A reminder of unfinished business


Do they wag their puny, finger bones at us

While we eat, watch tv, or, scroll or read?

Can they distinguish timestamps from

Their perspective? Can they even touch us

So that we feel it?


It must be infuriating to be unnoticed.

What with all the ghosts populating fireside

Stories, horror movies, and vampire shows.

Can their anger anchor them or must they

Let go? Must we?

Date: December 24, 2021

LitWrite Bangladesh is a blind peer-reviewed online biannual journal published by AstuteHorse

Site By-iconAstuteHorse