Gray sharkskin pants beneath moth-ridden knit jumpers,
the attic trunk creaks at the hinges, old dust puffs
like drags on cigarettes stolen from Mom’s koochie purse,
the pant’s crease oddly still sharp in runs along the peg
to what once was a lively instep atop dance floors no longer,
in the pocket a twenty dollar bill and a ticket stub from
the Surf Ballroom, the night before the father, son and holy ghost
departed the planet, Dion the Bruno Mars of then,
the money meant for a cab we never took, but now
I reach high in the air, on my tiptoes, to ease the attic door
back into place, intentionally leaving the light on.

Chagall 2019

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