11/30 [perfectionistism]

& eating quiet,

roll in splinters, kitchen desk scrapes on

my sister’s fingers like something brought home,

knuckles

dirt-filled and cavernous rapping  out Nirvana on

suburban tables, spoons of spilled milk dancing

on television–that movie Fantasia & songs hypnotic

writhing through hung & broken silence from bubbling

air conditioner ventilator,

swooning in the depths, & it is the first time he

shows us weak, shows us

imperfect & bedridden by a bee-sting-allergy

this is

the metaphor of mistaken weakness shining through perfection

that has defined my childhood,

shown the covers & how perfect smothers

perfect teaches and guides but forgets to hold,

congratulate & clutch & fail over

examples like plane and robot-arm pilots of brains

sinking in sky, sinking with clear air

pushing off through bike-race finish lines, sobbing in

private school hallways & soccer grass

breathless & streaming through the hills, stampeded spikes in churning cold

mud & heels, fake injuries & evading failure at

all costs,

shoving all in sugar-hungry mouths like old-fashioned sundae

rotting in heaves,

silent in classrooms

hollowed out &

afraid of mistakes

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