This pale and washed out bed-sheet
Worn out from when you were sickly.
I’ve lived long enough to associate the two
but not very long as this grief feels new.
I beg of you to take this fragrance with you,
to have left these clothes untouched
and the air as it was.
Or for these articles to be less intrusive,
these letters and photographs barely lucid.
Or for your handwriting to have been less legible,
or for your last days to have not been as medical.
Or for me, myself
to forget what you smelled like
and to not regret every distant night.
These scents are reminiscent
and they’re teaching me a lesson.
I was taught that the present soon becomes the past
but this is a present that’s outright determined to last