The moment of shared grief

Kristen de Kline
doesn’t happen like they said it should
my daughter it’s been seven and a half

years twenty-three days and seventeen
minutes since we talked two babies

have entered your world a few changes
of addresses we can’t keep track of

I’ve fallen down spiral stairs woken up
blurry and biting in a safe house out the

back of No Town I wrap my Yeti dressing
gown around my chest smoke Winnie

Blues crank up the volume on Roy
Orbison and crush stubs into my palms

when I got the call I was on the number
67 tram to St Kilda order a triple shot at
Southern Cross watch fantails nibble at
French fries shaped like semi-colons
Danish pastries flail about like dead fish
my body off the hook when I got the call

my son said:
did you think you’d be welcomed
save your breath save your tears
you weren’t there
when it mattered

the moment of shared grief 
we’ve edited you out

Kristen de Kline writes poetry by night and lectures Criminology by day. Their poetry appears in a range of publications including Backstory, Other Terrain, Burrow, Admissions, Shoot the Breeze, Pink Cover Zine, Australian Poetry Collaboration, Press: 100 Love Letters, Guide to Sydney Crime, Sappho Flows, Hermes, Have Your Chill and Project 365+1. Kristen’s debut collection Lawless was published by Girls on Key in 2021.



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