Just Visiting


Ema Dumitru
Published in
2 min readJun 9, 2024


Photo from personal archive

“What do you do? For a living, I mean.”
“Oh, I’m just visiting.”

The Man Who Fell to Earth (1976)

How can I describe my life to you?
In the head. In the heart of hearts
at the table in the back
shut within myself
to keep inside
what I want to summon
what I’ve summoned
eyes and mouths
mistaking silence for nothing.

I ate the sun
and held on my tongue more promise
than I ever wanted.
Tried to succumb to it.
I did not do what was written.

They said loneliness is a ghost town.
They were wrong,
loneliness is crowded.
A massive storm on a narrow path
and the storm moved inside me.
I was wandering and seeing nothing.

But to become human
I had to comb everything into gray rubble.
My family, my country
pressing on me with their deafness,
asking to be…