Carefully Calculated

You count the days until you get to see them, the years, minutes and seconds you have with them

You count the freckles on her cheeks and the birthmarks on his back,

that now form an exact pattern, carefully calculated.

You count seconds, then you breathe

You count breaths, then you push

You count blessings, then you cry.

You count their little fingers, one, two, three. Their tiny fingers

You count them sheep, because they can’t remember what comes after 8

You count all the pieces of the puzzle to make sure nothing is missing

You count stars because you can’t see them all

and you count the stars in their eyes because you can see them all, more breathtaking than the universe.

You count their teeth and still tell them to smile

You count to three then the tchoo-tchoo train arrives

You count letters and numbers and teach them to use their fingers, their not so tiny little fingers anymore

You count dreams, but with time you lose count

You try not to count heartache, because the counting gets too hard

You count the pieces that were shattered and try to fit them back together

You don’t count grudges because there should only be a few.

You count the tears but they keep slipping through your fingers

You count the laughs, and recall them again and again.

You count your friends, until you realize that’s not what counts

and suddenly you start once again, counting but hardly remembering the days that pass by

You start counting the people that forcibly said goodbye

Life now reveals you wrinkles you still have to count,

At one point the counting shifts, They are now counting  minutes and seconds they still have with you

Because somewhere along the way, you’ve run out of fingers.


Rim Abla



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