Poem by Chris Crittenden   •   Photo by Jill Burhans

they say my thoughts are losing heat,
that the effort to write
wastes the bulk of my soul.

long before brain cells die
i will have lost my skill
at forming impressions.

every poem
destroys a potential
to write many more—
it comes down
to inevitable failures
of heart engine and ache.

nor can i become again
what i was,
or collect the years of emotion
babbled away or cried—

they cannot be reforged
into sweeter karma,
or distilled into another
naïve seed.

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