Posts Tagged ‘stuff’

I am sorry I threw away your broken tiara,

the blue Cinderella dress with the ripped sleeves,

and the wand with the faded pink star.

I am sorry I tossed out the magic eight ball

with the blue message in the bottom that always said,

“Not Sure,” and the various mismatched sections

of Hot Wheels race tracks. And the pen

with the bobblehead that always falls off.

And you won’t find Barbie’s black high heel

rubber shoes with the broken back strap.

Or the toy Pegasus with only one wing.

Or the shiny slinky with the torque in it’s spring.

I threw them away.

There was more.

I know you loved them, those broken bits

of childhood, those souvenirs of past happiness.

I did it while you were in the other room,

and took out the guilty bag before you could peek inside.

I knew you would want them back, the jacks

you have never played with, the crappy plastic Elsa kazoo

you got at your best friend’s party.

And when you ask me, “Mom, have you seen

that little green rubber fish that I won at the carnival

four years ago”—yeah, I know you won’t ask me,

but if you do—I am prepared to say No,

no I haven’t. I’m sorry.

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After while you forget what all that stuff in storage was.
—Stewart Warren

I had forgotten that kiss
with the broken hinge
and that fist on the desk
with a leg missing.
And the angers folded up
like paper dolls, ripped.
I’d forgotten the banging
on the crooked door
and the slamming of
the empty silverware drawer
and spike in the bedroom wall.
I had forgotten the heat,
the quiet, the taste of metal
in my mouth. I’d forgotten
all about it until I found
that old key. And I only opened
the storage door a crack, but all
that old stuff fell out on me. Isn’t it strange
how we don’t just throw stuff away?
We store it in case it is useful some day
—we hoard it in our closets, we lock it
in our minds. Sometimes we label it
so we can find it again.
Sometimes we just give it a toss
and it lands in a heap with other things
we once loved. And they all
gather dust. And they all gather dust.
Leave the storage door closed.
Lose the key. Take a walk.

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