When We are Gone

When we are gone, we leave
Behind more than emptiness.
First there is our dust, which is
Obvious. Find the dead cat’s
Fur on your pant leg. Find the
Broken friendship still
Lingering on the bookshelf.

When we are gone, all of yesterday
Asks to be re-read in
Memory. Come back, it beckons,
Into buildings desolate and
Familiar. Not empty, but
Fruitless indeed, except
Weeds that keep on
Insisting on life.

When we are gone, we eat the
Same bread differently. We
Look for old friends and find them
Only in lacquer-coated dreams. We
Wake up and see dawn’s light
More kindly, and ourselves
More or less so.

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