If I Should Die Tonight

If I should die tonight in the desert

Bury me under the sands

The dunes will sing my name until my bones have turned gray

And all lips cease to speak of me

The wind will blow me across the flat lands

And I will settle as dust into the dust

From whence I came

If I should die tonight in the city

Do not throw my body in a dumpster

Hoist me up on a sail in the harbor

So that the winds can blow me away

Do not lay my body in the street

To be run over violently by automobiles

But instead send me away to where the wind can find me

And I will settle as dust into the dust

From whence I came

If I should die tonight in my bed

Don’t forget to wake me up

My bones are made for walking and death is no excuse

To lie lazily all day underneath my blankets

Gently nudge me and remind me that

I have work still to do

And that I cannot die in a bed

But rather must somewhere where the wind can somehow find me

And I will settle as dust into the dust

From whence I came


About Derek Berry

Derek Berry is a novelist and spoken word poet. Derek is the author of Heathens and Liars of Lickskillet County (PRA Publishing, 2016). He co-founded and organizes The Unspoken Word, a literary non-profit based out of Charleston, SC, which provides an intendent home for the poetic arts through regular readings, workshops, and community fundraisers. He is on the Executive Board of the Charleston Poetry Festival, the inaugural production of which will be Fall 2017. His work has appeared in The Southern Tablet, Cattywampus, Charleston Currents, Illuminations, RiverSedge, and other journals.He has performed in venues across the United States and Germany. He has worked as a photographer’s assistant, busboy, and bookseller. He currently works at a curation facility for Cold War History.

Posted on February 12, 2012, in dreams, personal, Poems, Poetry, Writing and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 3 Comments.

  1. Poignant, Derek. You have such a realistic grasp on life, that your grasp on death is simply peaceful.

    I wrote a poem in my mid-teens entitled the same thing: If I Died Tonight. It was majorly sappy. I blame the raging new hormones…

  2. I like the helpful information you provide in your articles.
    I will bookmark your blog and check again here regularly.
    I am quite certain I will learn plenty of new stuff right here!

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