at seven, at dawn

At seven, at dawn
the sky changed its mind
and rain drummed to the
gutter talk, and set off
a car alarm, the clouds
coughing up a shutter flash
blinding, stopping all the clocks
who all had memorized
what you forgot:

my birthday, my damp firecracker
with fizzles for wishes
and no funny paper hats, just a
sheet cake looking dumbfounded
like a hostage forced to read
his captor’s proclamation:

that every day is reason
enough to mark a year begun
or ended, so just go with it
what’s your problem?

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