body armor language

in this version
I am a dress maker
with a tape measure
wrapped around the neck
not pulled taut

I wear my black tee backwards
all day not inside-out
not realizing the boat neck
and plunging scoop back
might rebound

a white Peter Pan collar
haunts me on cool nights
when I'm not in the mood
to go back there
where everything began

one more garment
to hang
steampunk book cover
to design
boot to unlace

one more open safety pin
to pick off the floor
before it's too late
and another passive aggressive building
refuses to take a stand

one lone tree house
lights up an entire August sky

fall crashes
the eighth month
to drop hints
of sudden
and not so sudden death

soon Bob Staake's hell train
New Yorker cover art will fade
into the annals of another
record-breaking heatwave
storming the ever teeming underground

when the cat scratches your forehead
and leaves a lightning bolt
within striking distance
of the hairline
it's time to resuscitate the mantra

I don't believe in signs
I don't believe in lines
I don't believe in nines
I don't believe in zines
I will always believe in pines

then again the throat
will tighten around
the words that no one says
while these fly out
too ridiculous and free

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