step steady, child,
and follow close—
closer than you’ll ever know;

the end of the world awaits us.
the beasts have fled,

the shadows grow.
the past rots in our footsteps.

memories, those mind’s-eye lies,
not worth the time they wasted.

one more step: finality.
swallow what you’ve tasted.

This poem originally appeared in the 2009 collection Sixty-Six.