“Beyond Recall” by Sharon Bryan

Nothing matters
to the dead,
that’s what’s so hard

for the rest of us
to take in-
their complete indifference

to our enticements,
our attempts to get in touch-
they aren’t observing us

from a discreet distance.
they aren’t listening
to a word we say-

you know that,
but you don’t believe it,
even deep in a cave

you don’t believe
in total darkness,
you keep waiting

for your eyes to adjust
and reveal your hand
in front of your face-

so how long a silence
will it take to convince us
that we’re the ones

who no longer exist,
as far as X is concerned,
and Y, that they’ve forgotten

every little thing
they knew about us,
what we told them

and what we didn’t
have to, even our names
mean nothing to them

now-our throats ache
with all we might have said
the next time we saw them.

– Sharon Bryan, from Flying Blind

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