Essentials

By Todd Boss

I’m down to two bags.
I use a friend’s address.

I’ve only got one last
recurring nightmare

that forces me to face
my ex. There’s still one

child I haven’t lost, but
he’s next. Even loved

ones are non-essential,
sorry to report. You’ve

come here for news of
how to live, but Grieve

and grieve, is all I can
say. Grieve enough, you

can even get grieving
out of the way. Grief’s

chiefest among chores.
Do it well, and the

mostly empty universe
is yours.

Todd Boss’s books are published by W. W. Norton and Simon & Schuster. His
poems have appeared in The New Yorker, Poetry, The London Times, The
American Poetry Review,
and Best American Poetry. His lyrics have been performed
at Kennedy Center, Carnegie Hall, and around the world. He is the founder
of Motionpoems, whose poetry films have been presented in Cannes, London,
New York, Los Angeles, and elsewhere.

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