suffering incursion will
change you. there are a thousand ways
to die, my head begins again.
nail in eye.
car to body.
man with fist.
I begin to count
and begin to twist the straw
in an effort to curb the brain
from going deeper, usually
the fixation begins from the most
likely place.
it was the end of February,
2014 and I lived in a rowhome
on the cusp of Port Richmond
and Kensington and knew two things:
cars don’t stop for anything here,
and neither do men.

I begin to count and organize and also
step into a dark long reverie
of a place that is warm and
seeking me, but I also begin to
count and create myth from fingers.
begin to list the ways I’ve watched the
Earth take: my aunt run over multiple
times, murdered. my eight year old cousin
died from a brain anuerysm. my uncle
shot his face off in his father’s
old house. my aunt drank her body to death.

you see I have to stop and enter
the beach seeking me.
you won’t make it otherwise
as I turn the headphones up,
just miss a truck but I can
hear the ATVS revving.
the sign says walk
but my aunt was once run over

it’s the coldest winter in years,
they tell me after meetings,
and it’s not an easy time to make friends.

“doors #2”

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