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A Rock I picked up a rock yesterday Just when we were clearing the road An odd gravel, nothing more Feeling secretive, I held it, close in my palm They’d make me put it down, of course... I brought it home, left it by the sink I’d clean it after the potatoes, no one would notice Dirt and leaves fall like scabs and dyed the porcelain a sandy tan A touch from a mummified hand I wrapped it in a towel and carried it to my bedroom, left beneath my bed among slippers and heavy sweaters It didn’t shine; it wasn’t smooth, but I planned on nature taking over At the time, I feel twelve. I lay in bed, contemplating the ceiling painted in broad white rolls, yet jagged like the Moon Everything above the roof was so far away, most of all Heaven, which I don't believe in anyway I draped my arm over the edge of the bed, reaching under for my stone of ages, a safe for recent times It knew my thoughts and feelings It eroded itself with my life A sick acid, biting inferno I held the rock up to my ear and listened as if it were a seashell that sang but its secrets stayed locked up Had it heard my outpourings? It's a rock, stupid, a rock. Cold. I put it under my pillow. I close my eyes and wash again collecting dirt along my way for my cleansing stone Dirt on sheets is inconsequential Worse things stain me daily but I manage to keep one thing clean.
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