Abstract grainy, blue-gray silhouette of woman wearing dress in orange-pink doorway
Paul Spella / The Atlantic

How cavalier
people are—

with language
and with silence.

Any ghost will
tell you—

the last thing
we mean

to do
is leave you.

This poem appears in the October 2021 print edition. When you buy a book using a link on this page, we receive a commission. Thank you for supporting The Atlantic.