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I watch you as the ghosts you carry 
orbit around you, their gravity
pulling you in many directions,
the ebbs and flows of your tides
carry your emotions,
washing ashore, sometimes quietly 
and sometimes with great crashes.

I watch you as each ghost possesses you
in turn, a smile, a grin, a tear -
voices tumbling out each vying to be heard.

They know I see them. They know I hear them. 
They know that the vessel that is you would
be empty without them and yet...

Still they crave more, more of what was stolen 
from them, these ghosts, each a story 
of life and joy withheld, 
each a set of fears and pains more than anything.

They reach and yet still fear being shunned,
they continue their frantic orbit,
taking turns looking out your eyes,
using your lips to speak, your ears to hear.
Impatient and wishing for a place to call their own.

But they are tethered to this place and time,
and will orbit you until your last breath and perhaps
even afterwards, for what is time to them. 

And all the while I hold my hand out and
hope that the acceptance I offer will ease
the pain, if only a little. 

Knowing as I do, that holidays are the hardest 
for the ghosts that live and walk among us.

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Published inPoetry