11/27

Birthday poems were
always a bit uncomfortable,
iambic reminders I’m not
growing kinder;
one-liners
filling binders that’d make
Hallmarkers cringe.

Their
precociousness spells
out where
we’ve been,
but never where
we’re going.

Will you
join us another year,
hang up
faint cheers
like streamers?

Will you
be strong for us
one more time?

Boy, we’ll make
a believer of you
yet;
yet with
the climbing digits, the
dream exists a little less.

Caught on
my cursive like
strep in early spring
when warm air brings
a clash to
the current,
so that
despite your
assurances,

that card in the mail
only entails an
annual breadcrumb
trail to all
the reasons I want
to forget.

But there’s a picture
of us much
younger,
stuck to
my fridge like
hunger (or perhaps more
appropriately,
debt.)

I compare
your handwriting to
the days you
surely meant we were
supposed to
be together,

but I’m
not sure where your failing
grammar went.

Into the
drawer for one
year more,

waiting for
a gentler kind
of recollection.

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