There’s a funeral on TV for a character called Carl.
The tiny church is only half full and the man
doing a reading barely knows the deceased.
He spends some time repeating his fear
of dying in the town he hates.
The only person crying is a baby and her mum
doesn’t care. She answers her phone
to swear at a man called Shaun.
One of the scene’s punchlines
is the description of Carl’s ungraceful suicide.
To spare anymore awkwardness
the wife of the reader sings Danny Boy
in a silly voice through red lipstick.
The 12 people in the crowd stand and join in.
Their faces fill with smiles and laughter.
Carl is in an open casket.
He is old and has a good head of hair.
© Carl Burkitt 2021