Gifts from the dead

Thank you Anna for sharing this beautiful poem with us:


Cupboards, boxes, drawers.

Lofts, cellars, rooms behind closed doors.

Hampers, chests, car boots.

On shelves, in wardrobes and envelopes,

Pockets, bags, sheds and under beds


These are some of the places

You might stumble across

A gift from the dead


An old letter, a card,

A birth certificate,

Tissues once used, coins unspent,

Scraps of paper with doodles on,

A CD, tape or vinyl, favourite songs

Folded book corners on chapters unread

Photos of good times, trigger things that were said, or weren’t said, enough


Shoes, socks, jumpers, shirts,

trousers, slippers, pyjamas, skirts

hats, gloves, scarfs, glasses,

watches, rings, pills, syringe,

medical waste bin

Things they lived on and things they lived in.


An engraved athletics medal awarded in 1955,

Worn now round the neck, close to the heart

Keeps that connection alive


Try not to be scared, or hide away,

Your loved one gone, but here they stay

In these things, and these things and these things and in you


The physical things we cling to in passing

Holding tighter than ever now parted


Pieces of the person who’s physically gone

Remaining now in the pieces of you trying to live on


Some you will release, do not feel bad,

Those that you keep, keep them close, allow for the sad

But try in time to feel comfort instead,

For these are the things left behind for you, the living,

Gifts from your dead.