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by Janet Holmes

The noun one keeps batting away
refuses declension.

He says, I donít want to be
twenty-four again.
Twenty-four was a handful:

the flawless 
meatflesh, best self, miraculous
leap/thump on the hardwood,
the twist and splash.

The exuberance
in the present tense,

the timebound blood pump
two throbbing lungs butt
in their bone cage

surges to bursting.
He does not perdure

in this internal defection:
so rare, and so heroic.

Copyright © 2011 by Janet Holmes. Used with permission of the author.
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