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Eternity Suit


ISSUE:  Winter 1998

In a past death, I was a deaf-mute mercenary,
unable to distinguish between “shooting at” & “shooting with.”

I was an army of resentful stepsons, each of us sweet as a brass
  lollipop.

I was a stain-proof hermit in a beef-pink hermitage,
recording new data about silence.

That was back when I still believed I could be nobody someday.

Since then, I’ve been the greatest follower of the free world
& the undisputed leader of the captive one.

Since then, I’ve been God, infinite mime,
trapped inside a shrinking, box-shaped universe

& I’ve been Satan, most relentless of editors, revising the 9 1/2
  deadly sins
until deicide, sorrow, & shoplifting get cut.

I’ve been a man in the moon, a damsel in distress, & a eunuch in
   Utica.

I’ve been the mother of all battles & the overbearing father of all
  brokered truces.

I’ve been the boy next door & the girl buried beneath the
   floorboards.

I’ve been the Daughters of the American Revolution & the
  orphaned sons of cola wars.

Lucky kids get born into squalor. I got born into an eternity suit.
I breathe a fresh air of resignation with every life I pin to the
  lapel.

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