Ode to All Lost Things

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(c) The Lost Thing – Illustration by Shaun Tan (from the picture book with the same title written by Shaun Tan)

Where do all lost things go?
Is there a special Universe for them?

An elegant corner
A lost and found box
Hidden from our sight
The keys you misplaced this morning
While in a hurry on your way to work
That notebook with all your best sketches
All the breadcrumbs you never ate
The nights you were out and drinking
Befriending the dawn
The breakfast you skipped so you could
Sleep for ten more minutes
A loss of appetite after a fight
The millions of cells that die in us every other minute
The hair loss we have to deal with on a daily basis
The missing bus that reminds you how poor you are
That train you were about to take from platform 5
Never coming back…

To that earring you loved so much
Now lying in solitude on the floor somewhere
To the broken jar
The smashed vase
To the pieces that cannot be reassembled
To the teacup that shattered
Turned to bits
All forgotten and devoured
In the kitchen of lost things
An entire cupboard of loss
Accompanied by spilt salt and milk
Losing your train of thought in the middle of a speech
To lost empires and fortunes
Lost a prize, the gold medal
Losing a bet with your friend
To all those times you lost your temper
And never apologized for it

To lose your chance at saying goodbye to your dying cat – that is cruel and undeserved
To all the lost grandmas and grandpas
And all the love letters
Sent and misplaced
Forgotten, suspended in time
To all the choices we’ve never made
To all the lost babies
Who have grown up and are no longer babies
To all the miscarriages
To the loss that forever aches
Night and day, day and night
A loss so grave no one can deny

There’s no loss like human loss

Losing your best friend to the world
In your darkest hour
Losing all your senses
Losing your virginity
To the one you love
Losing portions of you
Standing unrecognizable in the mirror
The flesh is still yours, but everything else isn’t
The loss of what you cherish the most
Where does it all go?
The hug that brought together multiverses
The gaze of love
The loss of a chance at forgiveness
Losing all meaning
Losing faith
Losing your childhood dream
Your dearest memory
Losing sight of that which matters
Losing the now in the tumult of life
Losing your life over a death sentence

Where do all lost things go?
Is there a special Universe for them?

We search and search
Because no speck of hope is ever lost.

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2 thoughts on “Ode to All Lost Things

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