Daniel, since birth a type one diabetic,

When a young teenager was diagnosed

As bipolar. Covid turned him frenetic

(Isolation making a far outpost

Out of his flat). Chelsea, his little sister,

When, for hours, he didn’t answer his phone,

Called in the cops, who found (a real gut-twister)

That he’d died to escape being alone.

Fearing lack of cash to lay him to rest,

She launched a GoFundMe, raising (despite

The times) two thousand pounds by this request.

Still, the funeral was a rawboned rite:

No best suit, no music to mark his end,

Only closest kin allowed to attend.

[Daniel Furness, 34, died on March 6, 2020,

in Crookhorn (nr. Portsmouth), England.]

 Peter Austin

Many of my poems have already appeared, in the USA (Able Muse, Blue Unicorn, Barefoot Muse, The Raintown Review, The New Formalist, Fourteen by Fourteen, etc.), as well as in Canada, the UK, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Israel. Of my second collection, X J Kennedy (winner of the Robert Frost award for lifetime contribution to poetry) said, ‘I Am Janus is a controlled explosion of strong and colorful stuff, and it’s a joy to read a book in which every poem is splendidly well-made and worth reading.’

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