From One Survivor to Another

March 1, 2013

past lives

the loneliest things in this world
have never been named— the blister on your foot

the day you buried your father, 
and your good heels 
split in the mud, or

the final report papercut circling your thumb
like a ring— never kissed—

and behind your ear, that scar from the bumblebee
at the summer picnic who made you cry

until mom had to drive you home. there are no names
for these purple hurts, a forgotten ocean of them

bleached, collected, and sealed into bone-tight
compartments so that no one will know them, not even you

until a winter nosebleed or rain slick puddle
bring them rushing back, like all your pet rats

and canaries and frozen guinea pigs in the backyard, surrounded
by dirt and worms— just wanting to be named. just wanting 

to be held.

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