Les Misérables

You’re a massive American flag in the wind
and I’m a red Victorian farmhouse
surrounded by wheat.
You’re somewhere right now in stealth mode.
You’re somewhere right now surrounded by dishes.
I am here with a hangover.
Like a brown striped pickup doing slow doughnuts
in my skull. Like the sun
waving its creamy arms in the street.
But I love the word Misérables. It rounds out
in my mouth until my whole mouth
is warm. A hundred beautiful boxes filled
with different geodes couldn’t make me happier;
ships of wet gunpowder couldn’t.
It makes me comfortable
to say this. A draft blowing
on a closed shower curtain makes me
uncomfortable. I mean
when I sit beside a shower curtain
it can move eerily as if someone
were behind it.
There’s a certain short ballad playing in my glass.
It begins: when I was afraid
I took all my animals to bed with me.
When I was afraid I spoke to my brother about my skill with knives
and we sat up all night back to back, singing.

–Bianca Stone

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