The will to have children,

it comes in atoms

that make up slow smokes

of fear:

Fear that the sand may forget

the way our footsteps sank in-

pumped plump with life.

That a golden age would dawn without us,

that no one would read our name out loud

even in an obscure book at a city council library.

That it wouldn’t have mattered a thing

if we lived or died.


But, if a speck of our dreams, our secret schemes

made it to promised land

tangled accidentally in a hair of some distant being that lived

only for itself and its day,

I suppose we could call it immortality.

The will to have children is not about love or other noble things;

it is about the fear of dust.


Image – Untitled, by Ashley Carlton