April 1, 2017 orangeq2017

I Want to Tell You:

Stevie Edwards

 

That once, my brother (just a boy then) found me
on my knees in the cornfield behind the house—
cold April night storm, hail stinging me, voice howling
at what wasn’t there. That when he found me, arms
carved open by restlessness, every atom aching
to decamp, I couldn’t see his face through the thick
dark but heard a whimper. That his eyes must’ve salted
for my wounds. That he cloaked me with his raincoat,
knelt, listened for familiar clamor of distant freight
trains. That he used to come out with me to place
pilfered spoons on tracks. That we’d wait for whistles.
That if we stood too close, trains would stop, afraid
we’d jump out of this town. That we’d peel flat spoons
from tracks, burn thumbs bending them into bracelets—
metal could bend, could give, not brittle like bones.
That, therefore, he grabbed my hand to pray for God
to still me. That sometimes what’s needed happens.

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