Ballad for a Reformed Alcoholic.


Amber fingernails gnawed to the catalyst of human anxiety-
Tears of a reformed convict dotted his sister’s sweater
While they hugged,
“I wouldn’t let you sleep in the cold.”

His hand convulsed,
A watch on his wrist
Thrummed the beat
Of alcohol withdrawal.

His gaze approached my eyes cautiously,
Flinching eyelids revealed confessions
Sincere as heartfelt apologies,
“I have nothing
But what she gives me.”
Rejection of the material world
Like a capitalist using paper currency
As tissues.

“I promise I won’t drink,” he clarified
To her departing figure.

But one hour later
I found him toasting a drink
To his soul. The others
Were for his sister.

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