The Damage

by Sergio A. Ortiz

Something we were withholding made us weak
Until we found out that it was ourselves
“The Gift Outright” by Robert Frost

Maybe life gave us too much
at the beginning
and we kept looking
for a path that maintained
enough of a balance
so as not to become
this pestilent air.

Maybe life did not belong
to us anymore,
maybe the things we believed in
were part of the damage,
part of the petulant wind
knocking down the walls
of our nation.

And if we had known the outcome
would we have put our hands together
or looked elsewhere,
renounced everything, stayed still
so as not to cross the days that agonize?

This is so immense
it doesn’t fit into tears.
We’ll hear the results,
but there’s no greater nostalgia
than that of the future.

Sergio A. Ortiz is a two-time Pushcart nominee, a six-time Best of the Web nominee, and 2016/17 Best of the Net nominee. His poems have appeared or are forthcoming in Valparaiso Poetry Review, Loch Raven Review, Drunk Monkeys, Algebra Of Owls, Free State Review, and The Paragon Journal. His chapbook An Animal Resembling Desire will be published by Finishing Line Press.

Photo by: Ana Prundaru