You are the first
person to see
the beauty
in a firefly
without jarring it

to watch it die.
I buried calico quilts
in the ground, for weeks
and months after you died
so you’d have something

warm and home to sleep in.
Can I still tell you the things
I am afraid of? Does it count-
when you are
gone and I am grown up so much

that I shouldn’t be afraid
of anything like a god
or a word or a book with those things in them?
Please jar me. Let me be jarred.

I want to be in a place with a lid
so I can stop breathing
and stop wishing
I had enough sense to know why.

Sally J. Johnson is an editorial assistant at J&J Editorial. She will be attending The University of North Carolina at Wilmington to receive an MFA in poetry this coming fall.