To the Cousins I Barely Know
Some of you have done time,
some have disappeared into
and out of bars; some succeeded
in leaving our family somewhere
between Bridgewater and Percocet.
Cousins, you grow like galaxies,
when I think of how many planets
you could be. In our family,
blood takes the form of a tree,
or it loiters, shapeless as dust
that molds into the stars.
Dad didn’t talk much back then,
so how could I know another of you
won a few bareknuckle fights,
got jumped and was left for dead,
while your sister knocked down
Max’s door with a baseball bat?
In the space between us, bones
break, and I have stories only;
nothing when we meet at funerals.
Instead of talk, we breathe a silence
of cracked ribs, in a strange cage.
Dan Carey is a poet from Massachusetts, currently living in San Francisco. His work has appeared in Dropout Literary Magazine. He hopes his poems about addiction and mental illness will connect people with similar experiences, as well as create a platform for those to better understand themselves and the various diseases that afflict many people.
Write something about yourself. No need to be fancy, just an overview.