Ann E. Wallace

Names I Don’t Remember

(listen to the poem, read by the author)

I dressed her in a white sari
and painted her nails,
but I do not remember
her name.

And I don’t
remember the name
of the man whose cheeks
were stained purple
with pooled blood
from lying prone,
a ventilator
strapped to his face,
as he lay dying
and dying and dying.

I do not remember their names,
but I remember her
delicate nails and graying hair
that I combed smooth
behind her resting head,
and I remember his face,
marked by signs of a fate
that might have been mine.

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About the Author

Ann E. Wallace, a poet and essayist from Jersey City, New Jersey, is author of the poetry collection Counting by Sevens (Main Street Rag). She has published work in Huffington Post, Halfway Down the Stairs, Snapdragon, as well as Wordgathering and many other journals. Follow her on Twitter @annwlace409 and Instagram @AnnWallace409, or read her work at