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Previous Occupant

What Is Left Behind

I’ve never before lived in a house

So recently occupied by somebody else -

A house where I could see roots,

Bits and pieces that she’d forgotten to pack before leaving,

Her poster on the wall

She still hangs out with all the neighbors,

They know her better than they know me,

I mean, I just moved in.

I don’t know the way in which she left,

if she picked up without warning

Leaving furniture and art

If she slammed doors and cracked windows on her way out

Or if she moved quietly, gently carrying her things out to the front lawn.

I don’t resent the echoes she left behind

Because I know I bring ghosts with me too,

I think what scares me is that we’re probably pretty similar

The types who get called back to read for the same role again, and again, and again

No, it’s just that I’ve never lived in a house with such a recent history entirely separate from myself

and I know that I will continue to find bits of her in the cabinets and under the bed. 

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Previous Occupant
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