I think I’ll often love her

I often think of her, the orange tank top and jeans,

chock-full of ideas as she flips through the men

in her life like the pages of a fashion magazine,

the bass throbs, and she dances

to the rhythm of rebellion with the

men who’d do anything for her, she crushes

hearts like plastic cups, letting essences

spill like soda without fizz on gravelly floors.

I often hate her, the shallow acquiescence when

she returns home, the father an archetypal relic

of one-dimensional reasoning, the giving in

to passive control, chasing a will-o’-the-wisp by

listening to a voice of ‘reason’ talking

about the broadened roads and the parks

with statues of heroes of culture, forgetting

the blood of voices unheard, asking me to look

her in the eye and admit that ions of

hypocrisy create my brown

skin, and brownish-black hair.

I often like her, the sense of distancing herself

from the silence that screams

and the pauses between speech that tears

by getting out there and finding her own

while pin-pricks of self-loathing now

turn into cudgels, breaking me

over and again, synapses

dry, and the false euphoria of caffeine

and cigarettes stimulate no more.

But as I walked today into the

old college that is now a university,

years after I quit,

the students with eclectic taste

and points of view like different shades of jazz,

I slowly tore the nutshell

of chaos that I let myself be trapped in,

and whether I do what I must

or not, I think I’ll often love her.

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