the story of his life

across the worn lunch table,
divided by a thin line of skin,
i witness this defeated man
he has fooled into being.(but i still see him)he tells me his favorite stories
the ones that explain why
he is allowed be so scared.about the high school girl who left his love letter closed,
and the opera singer that married another man,
the lesbians who fill him with food,
with his old joke about moses and the promised land.

today, he says
he only buys love
and pretends that he tries to please them
while he softly whispers
that he never can.

when his words run out
he waits for me to reassure him
and agree that he has no choice
about what comes out of his mouth.

instead i thank him for sharing
all i can do is listen
hoping that one day he hears
what he is telling himself.

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