My brother moved back to Ohio years ago
but when I touch the Christmas text
it’s a poem from a stranger
and not transverse the same graybar sky.
Like how he hid in the maples and poison ivy
behind the church to smoke sticks
between hummingbird fingers
and blast 36 Chambers from a bruised boombox.
I played tennis ball homerun derby
in that same lot, batting opposite-handed
full speed felt might wake the Father.
We both followed the same whistle home at dusk,
but he understood that sometimes
you protect your neck by not protecting it at all
and swinging full strength toward the glass
that separates home
from Shaolin Land.
David J. Hersher is a writer from Massillon, Ohio. Find him at http://www.davidhersher.com or on Twitter @davidjhersher.
image: Paul Ruta • paulthomasruta.com • @paulruta