Wounds

Katrina Kaye

I don’t want
to forget you.

But I know
space creates distance,
creates forgetfulness,
changes the tone
of our voices
till they are no longer
recognizable.

I can carry
the photograph
of you wearing
flannel and frown
looking after me
as I drove away
for only so long
before it frays
and distorts.

The memory
of the strength of your arms,
the kindness in your touch,
the colors of your eyes
offering secrets and comforts,
the way I hung on your lip
and sunk into your skin
all the reasons I told you
I would always love you,
slips from heart and mind.

I wish I still had
that slash in my heart
baring your name.
The one time healed.
The one forgetfulness
is taking from me.

Not all wounds
are asked to mend.
Some I would like to keep,
run my fingers
over scar tissue,
and smile
in sweet reminiscence
of a man who
once gave me
a world.

“Wounds” is previously published in Parade: A Swimming with Elephants Anthology (2018).

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