The last monday of May,

The day when I think of you
The same night I always do
I want to say “hey dude
Nice to see…”
You know how it goes
My mind speaks only for poetry
But my tongue, my pen, my mind is forced into prose
I’ve had my share of highs and lows
Hooded eyes with rings where it shows

My crows and ravens all in tow
Leading me to disdain
From the blow to my brain
That shattered me like a hit from a train
“My cousin lies dead in vain”
The thought of you lying on a cold Baghdad street
So full of oil that it rains

The stain that remained drove me insane
I mean – it’s plain in its simplest strain
My thoughts are contained
Bleeding through a ruptured membrane

Because the truth is,
You didn’t die on that street,
You died on your damn bed
Like the bottles of pills and whiskey
I walked into your room on mother’s day
My hands found your shoulder
Your head rolled

You didn’t even bother to close your eyes
Why would you

You may not have died on that street
But you never came back

– J.R. Pender, The Haverford School, Class of 2016

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