Last Night

August 9, 2008
By Christine Willinger, Madison, NJ

Eyes squeezed shut
Curled against his bedroom wall
A tightly coiled spring

The crushing, crunchy weight
Of his pounding brain
Lurches him to a pit stop
On a dreary midnight cruise
Through barren pastures

The explosion, when it comes,
The lighting
Of some internal match
Stretches into an unshakable inferno

And with it
The sandpapery realization
That teenage invincibility
Is nothing more than a hoax

From behind a rain-stained picket fence
It’s easy to see
We’re flecks of sand
Stuck between the treads
Of unsuspecting sneaker soles
Carried through life
Or washed out to sea

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