Lost Ones

by Lebo Disele

 

Drifting in and out of consciousness,
I ask myself why I am so drowsy…
The answer is a dull ache somewhere deep
in a place I cannot name or touch.

Does the body respond to emotional pain
the same way it responds to physical pain?
I am trying not to shut down…
Babe, come here. I need to talk to you.

I should know it’s bad news.
I don’t.
I sit down expecting a romantic gesture.
It’s not.

I was just talking to your mom.
She says your Gran has passed.
My cry starts the way children’s do
before their voice catches up to their pain.

I am not sure if I am crying for her
or for the conversations we will never have.
Unformed memories somehow hurt more than real ones.
Can you lose something you never had?

Lebo Disele is a performer and aspiring poet based in Edmonton, Canada. She comes to poetry from theatre, where her focus includes dance, acting, directing, voice and dramaturgy. Most recently, she was part of NextFest with The Space in Between. She was part of New Voices Workshop in 2019 and has since had poems published in Wreaths for a Wayfarer: An Anthology in Honour of Pius Adesanmi.