In a fat box by the skinny bed
in a dusty room rarely regarded
covered clumsy with crushes
are the contents of a childhood-
lost letters of love- all penned
but never posted & cut-outs
of pin-ups next to wrist bands
friends twisted & time forgot.

In a lost room fallen to dust
hope was a cradle of comfort
in this box her father opened
when she failed to come back

from a war she never wanted.


All words and photographs by Damien B. Donnelly

Written as part of the Cobh Writers and Readers #PoetryPrompt featured on Twitter. Do drop by and join in the creative distraction.Β @CobhWR


  1. Mike Powell

    I can’t decide what intrigues me more, Damien, the photo or the poem. Both are full of items that have deeper meaning, have a backstory that is knowable only to the owner. What things do we save to help us remember? What memories are entombed in those objects, forever inaccessible to those who might have to sort though them when we are gone? We never expect for the young to die and it is hard to imagine the pain of a parent losing a child. There is a whole story in that final line, perhaps one of selfless service and devotion to duty. Yes, there is loss, but the poem suggests that despite it all, there is a glimmer of hope and comfort, as the father surrounds himself with memories of an earlier time.

    1. deuxiemepeau

      Thanks for stopping and thinking and commenting Mike. It’s true- decisions on what to keep physically and what to hold mentally can be very different and choosing the wrong thing can change the memory completely. I hope in this case the box holds more to cherish than to destroy 🀞☘️

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