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Sometimes reality
like routine
is a stubborn rock that
knows to say only one phrase.

But sometimes reality
staggers through doors
with a raised voice
hoarse and desperate at the edges
and ticking nerves,
squinting at lights and
recognizing among the rowdy crowd
only the faces that come from
places of missed chances
and all else are but
cold masks and
a pile of bills,
vomit on the shirt,
the stretch of day
permanently disfigured by
chronic coughing and
plans of rising like the sun
folded into uneven eighths
and lost
under dingy furniture.

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