On occasions of fighting intimacy;

those occasions of anxiety bonding to veins

and these rich blood cells powering

an ugly voice … If I had known then

how I would sleep now, I’d have set

an earlier alarm.


Watching you silently die, I didn’t know irony

would be grief’s loudest stage. Perhaps the banshee

that foretold your death, delivers my postmortem: I don’t

deserve to wear your timepiece, to follow its delicate

hands which ticked as you led your life, to touch

your lingering DNA, encircling the tiny face

you’d wind up, wrapped in gold.


As the sleeping watchman to a bandit

stealing the queen’s crown, my carelessness

with your heart is to the banshee,

taking what is Hers.

“I Lost” is a poem in the series Grilled Cheese Sandwiches and Other Tales of Love and Loss by Sally O’Dowd. It was originally published by Literati Magazine

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