We Called it our House / Tyler Norris

It was two brothers balancing chemicals

between one moment’s oxygen and

another moment’s hydrocarbons-

on four hundred dollars’ rent

and all the new clothes we could buy;


it was dripping air conditioning

mixed with the solemn sound of redemption

running through the halls of our apartment building

like a stream waiting for rain


and it was the absence of a woman’s whisper

behind the bedroom door each night,

a ghostly lack of noise crawling along the walls

in a haze, resting without a word

in the silence of every room,


it was a lapse in consciousness,

in a gram and a ten dollar handle,

two skeletons searching for flesh,

and the marrow in their own bones.


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