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‘Carry me with you
to the better world
don’t leave me behind
and alone,’ I say.

Her shut lids,
her blue dress
glared back at me
from the wooden coffin.

Mute or angry
a typical response.
Oh Granny,
Why did you leave me now?

Her frail body
unnerving to see,
I remember the
choices she lived by.

She bought my first drink,
taught me to ride a bike,
She designed my tattoo,
taught me to cry.

I never believed
that she would leave,
despite her illness
and old age.

Now, she’s gone
there remains no one to say.
‘Oh Jia,
stop smoking your life away.