It gets so cold
when loneliness enters the scene
but the feeling is actually burning.
Burning with the desire to break free.
Burning with the desire to sleep in peace.
Burning when you remember things
the way they used to be.
Burning when you see the shadow of
the empty place that once had a heartbeat.
A suitcase lies among the many things
Abandoned when the owner left for good.
Exposed to elements, old mildew clings
To fabric torn and peeling from the wood.
The dusty handle still emits a shine
In places that endured the frequent grasp
Of hands too hurried by the railroad line
To put on gloves or lock the metal clasp.
What irony! A suitcase left behind
Speaks more about the trip it never made,
Found useless for the task it was designed
When owner passed from substance into shade.
The things that matter now won’t matter then.
The cycle ends only to start again.
About the Poet
Randal A. Burd, Jr. is an educator who works with the disadvantaged in rural Missouri. He holds a master’s degree in English Curriculum & Instruction from the University of Missouri. Randal is currently the Editor-in-Chief of Sparks of Calliope magazine. His latest collection of poems, Memoirs of a Witness Tree, is forthcoming from Kelsay Books in Summer 2020.
It was wonderful to read each line and feel the elements present themselves in my mind. Randal did a great job of making me feel the loneliness and emptiness of the scene. All I could think of was “poor suitcase” as if it were feeling pain. Bravo!