they’ve stepped out for a moment but they’ll be back soon just wait

and having to wrap your mind around the impossible truth that they will never return again, that they could be in the next room or on another planet and the distance doesn’t even matter because regardless, you just want to see them, to hold them, but you can’t

that is the collapse of the chest and the burn behind the eyes. when you realize how long it’s been since you’ve said their name or seen their face and it pulls all the air out of your lungs and out of the room until you are left gasping on the floor.

it helps me to talk to them. “hi, i was thinking of you today. i hope you are okay. i miss you so much but maybe you are at the beach, or flying to the top of a mountain. maybe you’re finally enjoying some rest, some good deep sleep. maybe we can meet each other in our dreams sometime.

i love you.”

who am i

am i the first memory

vice grip on the side of mom’s jeans

stumbling across white linoleum

there’s a cookie jar in the shape of a cow

i want it

am i the worst memory

frozen in the doorframe

she doesn’t recognize me from the tub

fingers blue

she screams for a razor

am i the reflection in the mirror

unfamiliar and crude

am i the people i have hurt

am i the people i have held

why is it easier to forgive a stranger than yourself