Thursday, May 5, 2016

I would not be the man I am—
this gentle, recurring presence—
had I not grown up among brothers
who looked out for me always,
who called my BS and laughed
as they walked away punching

each other’s shoulders. No,
I wouldn’t be this strong-stalked
sunflower, firmly rooted yet
facing skyward had I not been
planted among similar sunflowers,
whiskery, brave to the breeze,

at ease with themselves:
But I would not be telling these
lies had I not been an only son,
his own shadow, always leaning
forward into something I
didn’t understand or want.

• • •


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