A poem for world poetry day

The Reason for Clean Sheets

There isn’t much beauty
in being alone,
I’ve found.

Not many want to hear that you saw
the wind make low hanging branches sway
as if they were dancing,
or listen to the story of a family of ducks
you saw on their journey across the street.

There is little poetry
in the hollowness of waking up
alone in crumpled sheets
you haven’t washed in weeks
because there’s no one to notice or mind―
it etches lines around your eyes.

There is emptiness reflected in the mirror
as you paint your lips and cheeks
for strangers whose faces
don’t soften when you speak
and who don’t hear music
in your laugh.

Because once there was one who did
for a very long time and
for him, you kept your sheets clean.

But then one day you sat on his bed
and watched his shoulders fall as you said,
“I think I need to be alone
for a little while.”

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