30 September 2022

Poem 10, 2022


Which child's heart
didn't throb, eyes
didn't widen
at the taste of tooth
rocking back and forth
the soft slide of gum,

a tongue toy
barely hanging
upside down.

When they are gone
the little ones cry
the merriest good-bye
dressed in hello.

Who's ripping the days off
a calendar now?

Hanging on

to a single tooth,
nicotine- caffeine- blood-
stained measure of youth,
like all pleasures
may disappear
once it's gone and the pain
killers kick in.

earns our affections,
that tomorrow
instead of nothing we see nylon
in its place
or perhaps a toss
between porcelain and gold,
a ghost changing its clothes.

—Razel Estrella

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