tw: death, loss, self-harm, and suicide (generally non-explicit)


i’d begin my vigil on your birthday and stay

till the grass becomes matted

and wilts unto itself

as leaves, snow, and sun befall stone


i’d trace the letters of your name

till grey grooves deepen

and lean into my touch


i’d mouth your epitaph with soft lips and wait

for my breathing to hitch

right before the last word

of your final line


i’d redo my speech verbatim

till our crude jokes sound like poetry

melancholic expression giving my stoic voice

hyperexposure therapy


i’d stop counting days because you

wouldn’t know

that your birthday just passed

and soon mine will too


i’d watch them bring flowers and

leave a hand on my back

i’d be your gargoyle guardian

from life

to after

and back


i’d sit and i’d stand and i’d prick my fingers

on a dying rose

till the branch draws blood

and i can emblazon your tomb


i’d reminisce till i’m dizzy

then forget till i’m drunk

and i’d lie beside you

pacing, tracing, waiting


i’d rub the braid of embroidery thread

between my cracked fingers

and fiddle with the bead

and imagine you’re also reaching

for yours


until one day

sometime- maybe mid-year

i’d let my knife slip

deeper than usual


and i’d decide

in the second it takes for the

string to snap

that life was far too long

to stay;


so our birthdays would pass

but by then

i, too, wouldn’t know that they did.

– ammarah siddiqui

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Skip to content