Freight

These boxes where we keep old bits of self
old cassettes in their cases, gathering dust
re-taped and hauled from house to house

The wild songs we packed down and forgot
and the instruments unplayed, unstrung
these boxes where we keep old bits of self

Corners crushed, cardboard crumbling—
but we stack and shove and shrug at the piles
re-taped and hauled from house to house

Are they dreams we can’t let go, so
pack them on ship and train and truck
these boxes where we keep old bits of self?

And if we opened them, would we know
how they rot or worm or lose all sense
re-taped and hauled from house to house?

We are not finished. Let’s make some room.
Let’s burn and scatter the ashes of youth
these boxes where we keep old bits of self
re-taped and hauled from house to house

A phrase from Quickly that caught my attention: “boxes where I keep.”