In this poem you hold sunflowers at 6am on a Monday morning.
In this poem we swear by fate when you hear your favourite song on the radio.
In this poem you are in aisle six stacking the Tim Tams on top of the Oreos asking me why people would ever choose a biscuit without cream in the middle.
In this poem you bite your nails.
In this poem you mix your ice cream till it melts into soup.
In this poem you wear your makeup too thick, trying to cover the freckles that speckled your nose. You’re cracking your knuckles and rubbing your temple as you deal with customers that heckle you behind the register.
In this poem you pat every Labrador we see on our morning walks.
In this poem you stand on the pier at sunset.
In this poem I smell your perfume when I walk into the staffroom.
In this poem you are funny, middle finger up, yelling out the car window, running as fast as you can, whenever you can, you greet everyone you meet by poking out your tongue.
In this poem I do not say sorry for saying sorry, I do not flinch in the mirror.
In this poem you piss tequila in a carpark.
In this poem we work every shift together.
In this poem I do not quit the job we shared.
In this poem walking down the isle of a supermarket does not feel like defeat, I do not taste copper memories that are wedged in my molars.
In this poem I do not flinch at ‘have a nice day’, I do not keep every receipt I am handed, I do not want to throw up in the shopping trolley.
In this poem I hand you flowers on your birthday, I do not lay them on your grave.
In this poem I write the reference for your next job, not your obituary.
In this poem you are still alive.
In this poem I do not write this poem.
Images by Daniela Spector.
Find out more at https://www.qldmentalhealthweek.org.au