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HALFWAY DECENT SINNERS Lucky Shirt


fffffffffft. fffft. fffffffffffffft.
The sound flutters in the air
like a question answered
by the miracle of a tiny bird
of a woman puffing into a tube
commands the wheelchair follows,
lungs stronger than legs
bent beneath her like broken wings.
--------------------
The man flails on rubbery legs
buckling. Muscles and nerves and brain
discombobulating,
a sideshow I can’t stop watching—
See The Incredible Spastic Man!
Hip bones forgetting thigh bones;
thigh bones forgetting knee bones.
--------------------
An aide pushes the boy in a wheelchair.
His body thrust back-back like an astronaut,
chin angled fiercely up; eyes
exploring the ceiling like constellations.
Across his chest the words, Lucky Shirt.
--------------------
Lucky Shirt. Meaning—what?
A curse? A joke? A prayer?
Such everyday unbearableness.
I want a shirt that says, Sisyphus aint no sissy.
Who knows what words will save us
or what grace we deserve in the end.
But what strength. What holy spirit
moves in mysterious human ways,
courage that blesses us as we praise.

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