The Others

Believing the voices of others

is like a fatal a accident on the side

of the interstate.

You promise yourself you won’t 

pause and look, but you do it anyway.

Feeling the stare of others on your skin

is an afternoon when you’re body is done with the ocean-

when you’re not sure whether you feel soft, salted,

and cleansed – or weighted, wrinkled, and burned.

Tasting the deception of others 

is like that one deceiving berry,

the one on the bottom that looks as brilliant as all the others,

but when you bite into it, the blandness fails

to satisfy your violent need for sweet half-truths.

touching the hand of another can be the last thing

you want to do if you don’t want to chance

remembering a name – and the only thing 

you want to do, if you want to forget your own for a while.

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