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November 8, 2018 / barton smock

{ some : recent }

[grief will require that your language learn another]

(we are trying to limit
screen time
as our son
was known
as the one
being sad
for bigfoot

(it takes seconds for a bath
to fill
a mirror

(I am trying to tell you that I went to the party

& that I swore there
on the lives
your children

(when dressed
as mine


one hears
a brother
tell a sister
it’s like tickling
a scarecrow
when do you
love god
I love god
while I’m eating
I have a mom
does everything
a father
who rubs his head
who thinks
every kid
on a bike
is a unicorn
the cigarettes
are gone
if I see
a spider
I see
it has the memory
of an angel



god comes to me in the knowing I’ll not find the one I’m here to replace


it is hard to carry
a nine-year old
not only
up and down
but also
by design


I had
what Peter had

three places
to smoke

[separations for unlikeness]

father likes to say that touch has lost its mind. mother

be like hunger
and forget

(the boy is the boy who teaches death
to read
and I am sad
for death
for years

(in the toy aisle, in a circus
restroom, at the roll

of my son’s
eye, and at the gate

of the all

(also shyly

in the more traditional
of god

(their hesitant


I worry
without toys
on the sadness
of sons

my brother
as I make him
the keeper
of baseball cards

(even now
in pain
I look
at men


he points a pop-gun at a jack-in-the-box

(in hell
and on

your birthday


god goes to sleep every morning knowing adam and eve were the same person. god is waiting to die. we bite the child, or we don’t. our grief a prop of the churchgoer’s improv. our emptiness made of wax.

[a smaller moment of her creating symbols]

a smaller moment
of her
creating symbols

her ghost fan
on a winter
fly, her son

a bee sting
on the mind
of any angel
its sense
of smell, our hair

at birth
by sleep
a nostalgia
to which god

adds nothing

[not be]

but I caught him smoking. as is. as asked by god for makeup. also, there were fireworks, we saw them, and they made him want to pick flowers. know it last

(that we once held a small day for the changing of our passwords


for very little
over a bowl of nothing
all of this
has been to pray

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