The hospital was painted in nature’s green & man-made white,
the nurses filing through the corridors
like whispering ghosts in cartoonish scrubs—
a sort of earthly purgatory.
They’d come into the world,
15 miles apart,
but departed together—
one after the other.
Did true love take away the other’s will
to live without them?
Mother & I prayed together,
Caitlin & I laughed together,
but David & I mourned together.
It was the saddest of the 3
that seemed to bring people together,
even if it didn’t keep them together.
Our Christmas tree was like something out of a magazine,
the Suttons’, like something out of an awkward family photo,
& yet, there was something about it that warmed me,
even as ours left me cold.
For it was because of me he stayed,
& because of her, he would go.
To wish for him as mine
seemed a form of matricide.