i didn’t see it but it was there

i saw the bedroom once mine carved into a master,

i didn’t see it but it was there
Photo by Anton Darius / Unsplash


a drowned mouse in the coffee left for months

in the pot. the windows left open in august now chilling the octobered house.

the food left in the bed, the laptop left open, the shit still in the toilet. i didn’t see it

but i was told it was there. i saw the bedroom once mine carved into a master,

piled with trash and tools and leftover life. a tire in what would’ve been a bathroom

across from what was the bathroom, an empty room with a plywood outline

of what would’ve been a tub, lightless aside from the lamp dragged in, a toilet slick

with grime. the evidence should point to an accident but knowing what there is to know

there’s no telling. so i pissed all over the seat trying to stay far enough away from the filth,

at least i cleaned up after. so i wouldn’t drink from the pot no matter how long it’d been soaking

in bleach, at least his mother brought a spare. so i swallowed around my reasonable despair,

at least i didn’t voice my anger at others spewing theirs. despair or grief or the inability to opt out,

does it matter? i pointed out everything i recognized, same as i do any home i’ve left

with the self i was still haunting the halls. so i spent money i didn’t have on film

that won’t turn out, the only thing i have to buy is the house he lived and refused

to die in. so there was no ladder to check the last hiding spot he had,

the letters were a lost cause anyway and the cash was never mine to have.

so this isn’t so much a poem as a series of recollections tied to memory

or context or place or grief, you’ll follow along with me or you’ll give up

before you know i’m as lost as you and i lived through it. i didn’t see it but it was there.

she handed me an envelope that was marked wrong, and i pulled out what i thought

was a septum but was the ring that had homed in his ear longer than i’d been alive.

who knows if they cleaned it, wiped it with sanitizer, or if i touched the remnants of decades

old flesh, i dropped it once i knew and not a moment sooner. there was no water

in the bathroom and no soap in the house so that touch stayed with me for days.

BEE LB is the facsimile of a living poet; a porcelain pierrot with a painted face. they collect champagne bottles, portraits of strange women, and diagnoses. they've been published in G*Mob, MOODY, Landfill, and The Racket, among others. their portfolio can be found at twinbrights.carrd.co