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Laura, Toucan Editrice

Saturday, July 2, 2011

papa, Ryan Mattern

the golden horse around your neck,
the one now wasting inside my drawer,
rises and races as your chest heaves,
drowning as your skin sinks.
the horse has seen its days,
first unearthed from a cardboard casket
then living on your chain for thirty years.
you cried when they told you
you had to take it off.
it was safe in your wife's jewelry box
until your oldest daughter
stole it
hocked it
cooked it
shot it.
we found the dealer
and brought the horse back to you.
my hand that held it
torn at the knuckles and flecked with blood.
you cried when we told you
who had taken it.
the horse galloped across your collarbone
until they put you in the ground.
you left it with me and i left you behind.
i hear the horse whinny under my socks in the drawer
and think of putting around my neck.
but i won't; it won't bring you back.

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