t-shirts

by Malahni Banta
t-shirts

“…the ones who had been hanging
from street lights and shooting stars,
who asked for help in the form
of loud music, slow dancing,
painting in dark colors, tying
red balloons to doorknobs…”

 

and we asked you for help

and you laughed at the candor

and we dropped dead like flies.

 

bloody t-shirts falling from

clothing lines as clothing pins

litter the floor of the morgue

 

and parents pick out caskets

ten sizes too small, for dead

babies and children of the

 

night, the ones who had been hanging

from street lights and shooting stars,

who asked for help in the form

 

of loud music, slow dancing,

painting in dark colors, tying

red balloons to doorknobs,

 

and leaving home without layers.

these children, they’re wearing t-shirts

in late december and you’re

 

wondering why they’re shivering.

in the mean time, you turn your cheek

and lift the zipper of your fur coats.

 

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