He was young, but not too,
And though his words dripped out
Leaving whiskey puddles which ruined
Carpets and our folks’ oak wood floor
He will be missed like a dog that nips
Or a car that’s cozy but oh so very
Worthless, like that scraggly cloud
That can’t rain or cover the sun
But is still a cloud. When he left we
Cried, but only for a dozen moments
And then we were fine as granite.
Because though he was man in some
Way, he was just a poster in the street,
Soggy, torn, faded red and sunken.
He died like most of them, somewhere
Built of cracks and leaks, a house stale
With dead words and smoke where
he could go to crumble and shake.
By then we’d forgotten hiking days
Or sea days or thunderstorms breaking
Overhead or watching tiny summer clouds
Or playing with our tiny biting mutt.
Instead he died young, but not too,
And his lungs were whiskey and salt.
I wonder where
Originally appeared in Old Red Kimono, 2015