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By: Zachary Bedard

The chain at the end of the watch,
Is designed to hold it close to you.
Each one of the silver links
Only serving to add to its length
From the negative space provided.
Creating tension.
Was the distance always this great?
Am I not good enough?
“I know you could do better”
Gripping the chain,
I tighten it around my heart
A heart struggling to give life to passion
Self-disciplined instead

The watch’s silver casing
Cold to the touch
Thawing in my hands.
Yet, the two hands on its face, 
Frozen in time.
There’s a tightening in my chest
Seconds counted
Heartbeat by heartbeat instead
A constant reminder
That I am alive
Without you

Memories racing.
Your humor sometimes cruel, yet uniquely you.
“Can’t be my son, his hair’s too dark.”
The doctor stood there shocked.
“My wife tripped me.”
The paramedic flabbergasted after you collapsed.
Knowing full well it was low blood sugar.

Your final words to me
“You’re not my son”
Was this your usual joke
Or has the IV drip clouded your mind?
My heart locks up at the notion
That I’m unrecognizable to you.
Tick tick tick
The clock on the wall counting down
Its second hand deafening

Those precious seconds became days
You seemed better that morning
The phone rang
Time stopped
Heart screaming

Years later it comes to me
Sifting through the mementos.
Splayed out on the cement floor
A pocket watch’s dull shine
Speaks to me.
Shiny, yet frigid.

I open it up
Its own hands immobile
I turn the dial
A date to remember
My bittersweet smile
Reflected in the scratched glass
The watches chain is broken
My heart free to breathe.
Those imprints left with me
Now missing you.