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  • Sun baked lung
    brown bag lunch
    in the mines of
    Wheeling, West Virginia where

    there was a woman
    who sang every morning,
    and brought flowers
    every afternoon to him

    drank bourbon with one
    ice cube every evening
    while sitting up in bed
    on sheets with lavender

    etchings, the outlines of moths,
    an address book filled with
    ghosts who once inhabited
    a busy town of men in hats

    women with arms full
    of children, groceries, umbrellas
    dented tin roofs with soot
    and shameful glances from the top floor

    down to a street with no
    sunny side, only the hustle
    to make a decent salary,
    to breath without effort

    raise the young without weeping
    over the choices available
    without a dime or a dream
    that isn't attached to a

    false landscape, hollowed out
    efficiently, clean as a bleached
    bone, creaking under the
    weight of a liver that now

    echoes like an empty bar room.
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