To Break Open Wings

by Simran Jain

Picture the bottom drawer of the bedroom dresser,
always left crooked and open
and watching with eyes that just learned
they are allowed to watch.
He could close the drawer if he wanted,
make it look just like it did in 2006, or 2014, or
any other year a new type of bird was discovered,
but this is not a story of another year of the same.

This story is about painting freckled noses,
etching rainbows into empty skin,
kicking the bad habit of nail biting, hand picking
a single tree outside the window to dream of perching on.
It’s about eyebrows and cheekbones and questions
and liberation and it’s about none of these at all.
It’s about him, and the bottom drawer of the dresser
that watches him get dressed in the morning.

I’d like to hide in that drawer, the bottom one
left crooked and open and seeing.
I’d like to watch him brush away the
dark circles from a sleepless night.

Imagine a man,
just like any other man,
but with colors dripping off his calves.
Imagine a man,
not like any other man,
but with wings instead of arms.

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