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by A. A. Parr
for Their Mother

At night, when the lights are off upstairs but yet,
something here and there glimmers, streaks,
makes mockery of the dark, you sit
out on the top step, another flash of light
centering your smoke, you breathe in
the night, breathe in your space, this moment
that alone is yours.

It's a lonely profession, this professing of love;
an all-tiring consumption, the practice of life
lived outside of your own. When
the light flickers, when the last dark settles,
they sleep and you,
spend half the night remembering how.


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