the incomplete thesaurus of loss

1. ocean
1   the whole body of saltwater that covers nearly three-fourths of the earth

blue, deep

words related to ocean
the emptiness of you, probably, covering nearly three-fourths of everything I see
the weight that stretches on from one day to the other
and I’m still learning how to swim

2   an immeasurable depth or space

chasm, abyss

words related to ocean
hollow, black hole
everything you left me with
I’m wondering if I loved you enough, because there is still so much left over


2. empty
1   lacking contents that could or should be present


words related to empty
the chair to my left at the dining table
the room downstairs
the bed with white sheets

the chair to my left at the dining table, with you telling me I shouldn’t eat cake for breakfast
the room downstairs and me knocking again and again because you always kept it locked
the urn beside Lolo Ferdie
supposedly, home

2   not expressing any emotion

expressionless, numb

words related to empty
you, when they told you for the third or fourth time that you were decaying
you, taking everything they told you to take, even the ones you hated
you, climbing up and down steep staircases, clutching my arm
you, that one night we came into your room to pray for you
you, except for a few rare moments like

you, telling me old love stories (and Hollywood starlet gossip)
you, telling me stories of the island you still call home
that one night your lungs refused to let you breathe
the last night, when I made you promises

3   having no meaning

meaningless, senseless, pointless

words related to empty
September that year
especially October, the first birthday without the celebrant
and November
and December

January the next year, when I decided it was time to start healing


3. piece
1   a broken or irregular part of something that often remains incomplete


words related to piece
your voice when I’m watching black and white films, even the ones you probably haven’t seen
your footsteps when I stand by the hallway that leads to your room
your name when I absentmindedly scribble
your eyes when it’s night and the stars are out
scattered everywhere, on everything, always

you now, in a place where windows are wide and pearls dangle from the gates


4. morning
1   the first appearance of light

daybreak, dawn

words related to morning
the day I stop writing sadness and you in the same poem
the day I learned that the pain is just a reminder that I still love you
the day I stopped fighting a battle that’s already been won
your last breath

refusing to let rivers flow through my words

2   the point at which something begins

birth, beginning

words related to morning
knowing that there is a time for everything
not filling the void, but building around it
not picking up pieces, but letting new ones grow

your last breath, birthing the beginning of peace


CW 10 assignment - Write a creative nonfiction in a nontraditional form.

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