May 27, 2012

They were in his top dresser drawer

in the painted wooden box

where they had always been.


As a child, they were playthings,

the multicolored ribbons,

brass in the shape of stars and eagles,


exotic, though without real meaning,

stories of war more from comics

than from life.


When I emptied the house

of its artifacts and memories,

I sat with them  before me,


ribbons faded, brass tarnished,

longing to touch

what I no longer could.


I put them in a cardboard box,

carried them out,

closed the trunk.


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