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"ink on pages lasts longer than  the candle I was born holding"

Published onNov 29, 2023

Photo by Pixabay:

yet again, the season changes.  
winter dies, spring is reborn.  
worms crawl out for sun.  
birds return for seed.  
grass grows green.  
flowers bloom. 
people smile.  

the cycle repeats, ad infinitum.   

ink on pages lasts longer than  
the candle I was born holding—
help me savor things that matter  
most before they’re gone forever—

the worn maps of memory… 
the tired paths once walked… 
the changing landscapes of cities… 
the greying oceans of dissipating time… 

all this, and everything between, 
carefully scratched into poems,
will be what remains of me.

Tohm Bakelas is a social worker in a psychiatric hospital. He was born in New Jersey, resides there, and will die there. His poems have been printed widely in journals, zines, and online publications all over the world.  He is the author of twenty-four chapbooks and several collections of poetry, including Cleaning The Gutters of Hell (Zeitgeist PressPress, 2023).  He is the editor of Between Shadows Press. 

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