What we bear by Leanne O’Sullivan

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What We Bear

 

It is December and she is barefoot.

She has packed her things, her jewels,

dirty laundry strewn on my bedroom floor

since I was born. I hear her closing

the bathroom door, switching off

the light, humming through the house

like a banshee, declaring death.

She has picked the blood from the white walls,

grain by grain, as if it were mildewed paint.

My heart has long since stopped giving it;

she’s become a corpse every time I look at her.

She’ll perish without my eye, my lung,

her dead body folding in a box.

Each urn of water empty, she leaves me.

I see her head nod above the ditch,

like a dying flower in winter,

as she descends to a country

far away from thought.

 

Leanne O’Sullivan

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