To The Memory of James; An Apostrophe | Teen Ink

To The Memory of James; An Apostrophe MAG

March 27, 2022
By Hallie606 BRONZE, South Jordan, Utah
Hallie606 BRONZE, South Jordan, Utah
2 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Dead people receive more flowers than the living ones because regret is stronger than gratitude."
~Anne Frank🌸

"If the crown fits, wear it."

James, you were more than my cousin.

You were my best friend,

You were my whole world.

We did everything together.

The first third of my life was spent with you

You made me who I am today.

I still remember that day.

You were seven, I was five.

We were at grandma and grandpa’s,

Dressing up like we always did.

You were the policeman,

I was the firefighter.

We were playing a game,

A game that only you and I knew the rules to.

We ran around the house, 

Laughing but forgetting

What was funny in the first place.

Your mom had come down to check on us,

Just in case.

But we were fine.

We were always fine.

She cooed over how cute we were,

Presing a sloppy kiss to your cheek.

You made a face, I laughed.

Your mom reached into her pocket, 

Pulling out the camera 

She carried with her everywhere.

She told us to hold still and smile.

You grinned, looking off into the distance.

I was smiling too, but my eyes were glued to you.

You were everything to me,

You were my whole world.

I wanted to be just like you.


A week passed. 

I had just gotten home from preschool.

My mom got a call.

She sat me down, tears threatening to fall.

She told me you were gone.

My whole world was gone.

You had gone to the pool with your friends,

But you had gotten too excited.

You loved the water.

You jumped in, your lifejacket left on the bench,

And you didn’t come back out.

The water had swallowed you whole,

It wrapped you up in its arms and didn’t let go.

It held you there until your last breath had disappeared.

Yes, you loved the water

But it ended up being your downfall.

I was terrified for the longest time after.

I hated water for taking you away

And I was terrified that it would take me too.

I didn’t swim.

I didn’t go to the beach.

Bathtime was always a struggle. 

I didn’t want to go away too.

I still miss you, James.

I’ve never been the same since you left.

I no longer hate the water.

We’ve come to a sort of understanding.

But I still miss you.

The photo from that day is sitting on my desk

Along with a note that you never got the chance to give me

Your parents found the drawing, James

I look at it every single day

Sometimes I feel like you’re right there with me

I love you, and I miss you

But I’ll be okay

I promise

The author's comments:

This is a poem I wrote for my creative writing class during our poetry unit. I decided to write my poem to my cousin James, who passed away when I was very young. The two of us were very close, and his loss affected me greatly. Writing this poem has become part of the healing process that has taken place over the course of a decade. The drawing mentioned in the poem was one that James had drawn for me the day after we had gotten together at our grandparents', dressing up. It was a picture of the two of us inside of a heart. He had drawn it intending to give it to me the next time we saw each other. Sadly, he passed away before he got the chance. His parents discovered it shortly after the incident and gave it to me at his funeral. The drawing along with the photo of us his mom had taken that day are framed and are currently on my desk, where I look at them almost every day.

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This article has 7 comments.

on Apr. 16 2022 at 3:59 pm
Kingpoet2806 GOLD, Collierville, Tennessee
19 articles 0 photos 36 comments

Favorite Quote:
Her heart was an open book with beautiful pages and detailed lettering. She wanted people to read her story in hopes that it would make them write their own. Instead, every person who came across the pages of her heart ripped out their favorite story and took it with them. They folded back pages and bent up corners. They signed their name with sloppy writing and with a simple 'goodbye'. This book is now tucked away in the darkest parts of her, because no one wants to read a tragic story with a bad ending.

this is astounding. you have put so much feeling into this poem. I can not stress how truly valuable this piece was for me.

on Apr. 12 2022 at 3:18 pm
Bumble_Bee PLATINUM, New Athens, Illinois
39 articles 2 photos 122 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You will be found" -Dear Evan Hansen

Oh my gosh, I'm so sorry for your loss. This poem gave me goosebumps, I could really feel the sadness and picture the events going on. It was so so sweet and sad at the same time. I hope you're okay, and again, you are an absolutely lovely writer! Much love to you! <33

on Apr. 8 2022 at 11:30 pm
kali73304 SILVER, Long Lane, Missouri
6 articles 2 photos 35 comments
@Hallie606 I am sorry for your loss. I could feel the emotions through your writing. You are a very good writer.

on Apr. 8 2022 at 2:02 pm
Hallie606 BRONZE, South Jordan, Utah
2 articles 0 photos 4 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Dead people receive more flowers than the living ones because regret is stronger than gratitude."
~Anne Frank🌸

"If the crown fits, wear it."

Thank you so much everyone for all of the support! I hope you all have an amazing day!💙🥰

on Apr. 7 2022 at 7:14 pm
Kaylabiggica GOLD, Greenlawn, New York
16 articles 0 photos 10 comments

Favorite Quote:
"I desire the things that will destroy me in the end."- Sylvia Plath

The way you wrote this was amazing and so emotional. I began crying while reading this because I could feel your emotions put into writing. But all in all this is an amazing poem.

MAC-HAB GOLD said...
on Apr. 7 2022 at 12:47 pm
MAC-HAB GOLD, Wyndmere, North Dakota
12 articles 2 photos 3 comments

Favorite Quote:
"You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think." -Christopher Robin

I lost a little brother named James who also loved the water, so reading this stabbed me in the heart in a good way. Poetry is healing, keep writing.

Afra ELITE said...
on Apr. 7 2022 at 7:10 am
Afra ELITE, Kandy, Other
100 articles 7 photos 1818 comments

Favorite Quote:
"A writer must never be short of ideas."
-Gabriel Agreste- (Fictional character- Miraculous)

Aww...that's so sweet and heart-touching...This poem is really soul-stirring...⭐⭐⭐
I'm really sorry for the loss of your cousin...I know how it feels to lose someone who you are really close with...It hurts...But, it is inevitable...
As an overall, all I have to say is, James is really lucky to have got you as his cousin...🤍🤍🤍