her absence has proven intolerable,

as her presence used to be

a maddening dilemma

disorienting my maladapted routine

she'll be taking the dog soon

her smell (already gone)

scented candles, dry-shampoo,

overpriced aromatic hand soap...

i even miss the odors from the barn

i miss the pile of laundry

she never picked up,

the oil stain on asphault

from the truck she wouldn't maintain,

clumps of her hair on the shower wall,

soiled tampons in the trash,

dirty dishes piling up,

her kiss of morning breath...

am i missing who i remember,

or a phantom of who we could have been?







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patriciajj's picture

So many break-up poems just

So many break-up poems just skim the surface, but you, with poetic sleight of hand, knew that evocative simplicity and details were the way to make it real and pierce the heart. Your resounding question carries the loss even farther and deeper. Striking work. 

Stephen's picture


An excellent observation of the workings of the mind.

ewbonitz's picture

Thank you for the compliment.

Thank you for the compliment. To remember with longing the things I used to resent... I'm still not sure how I feel about that; but I feel it all the same.