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A History of Grief, by Tom Darin Liskey

A History of Grief

There were nights
I couldn’t sleep
After you died.
The cancer 
That stole our father
Took you as well.
In Geneva
Your ghost came
Back to me
In a rush of memories
The coma.
The hospital bed.
The brass crucifix on the wall.
The cancer growing
Your broken body.
Grief turned
My eyelids
Inside out
Like celluloid;
Flayed my heart open
Like a dumb animal.
So, I dreamed awake
Like ghosts do
Walking the narrow
Night streets of Carouge
Past alleyways
Where Arab boys
Sold hashish,
My feet moving
Always forward
To a clock
Without hands
Every muscle
Yearning for exhaustion
Something to bring rest,
But none ever came.
I became a stranger to myself
Hating the reflection
I saw in darkened shop windows—
The ghost of a drowned man
Floating on black water.
An image that only you would understand,
My sister.

Tom Darin Liskey spent nearly a decade working as a journalist in Venezuela, Argentina and Brazil. His fiction and non fiction have appeared in the Crime Factory, and Driftwood Press. His photographs have been published in Hobo Camp Review, Roadside Fiction, Blue Hour Magazine, Synesthesia Literary Journal and Midwestern Gothic. 

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