I am Human and I was Here

I am Human and I was Here

Autumn Jefferson
Media Staff

when sunlight hits foggy glass just right

prints reveal themselves, oil smeared into smiling faces

pictures finger painted with no paint, phrases scrawled without a pen

as if to scream i am human, and i was here


couples etch initials into the sand 

an inch deep with their big toes

giddy as if the tide won’t soon swallow them whole

echoes of laughter prove that they were here


former tenants’ mail still delivered to my house 

even though they’ve long been gone

it feels wrong to touch it, so it piles up, until nothing else will fit

we throw away the reminders that they too were here


ivy snakes up the gala apple trees

planted half a century ago, bark rough and worn

by loving hands wrinkled by age and the sun

an abundant legacy left behind here


mossy headstones cast shadows onto their neighbors

cicadas weep, breaking years of silence

they are the only ones who have cried here in years

over the only evidence that they were here


freckles smattered on shoulders and round cheeks

tattoos on ribs and scars on knees

the world imprints on me, i leave all but a scratch on it

whispering i am human, and i was here