Traci L. Gregory

WHAT REMAINS

A new blue suit
Tailored and smooth
Buttons at full shine
Stiff lapels salute the masses
Pants pressed creases
To appropriate ridges
All of it merely material
Stuff
A carnival sideshow to conceal
The truth
No business suit
Can hide the fear of not fitting in
Not slipping seamlessly back
In the urban ranks
A tortured few
Rejected by the placid many

Locks of grey
Cascading from eyebrow’s corner
For destinations
Far behind
Fine lines, deep grooves
Whittle the forehead
All of it merely show
Mask
A façade of years to camouflage
The truth
No signs of age or wisdom of years
Can hide the youth
Captured long ago in Southern heat
Told to kill, become a number
Faraway to a land
You brought your childhood

A fair haired aging bride
A constant soul
Canary colored sundress drapes
Round hips
Slender fingers intertwine
Your support
All of it merely fragile
Rust
A platform eager to collapse upon
The truth
No lifelong mate
Can hide the loneliness
Blackness of not understanding
Empty spaces where brothers were
Comrades
And only you remain