Monday, January 17, 2011

Where Our Youth Goes to Die

I found him, alone, lying in the woods
studying each cloud that passed,
the old snowflakes blowing from sleeping trees.
Shirt and arms tucked beneath his head,
he looked like a man vacationing on a beach,
a bullet hole in the middle of his bare stomach.

I pulled off my sweater and shirt
pressing them on his wound—
Do you remember Halloween, when we were young?
There was a time when costumes felt more real
than the clothes we buried beneath;
plastic masks becoming faces for days,
we paraded around as skeletons and heroes
taking sacred oaths to never break character.
I was always the first to forget my promise.

His blood began to soak through my clothes,
yet he remained calm, still breathing, searching;
a gun sat several feet from his bent elbows.
Do you remember campfires in the snow?
He quietly closed wonderful eyes
and I stared at his fading body,
strands of blood pouring from the hole
that has always burned in his stomach—
a pale white canvas painted in flames.
I saved, what I was supposed to save.


Peter Greene said...

Thanks - that was lovely.

Akeith Walters said...

Man, what a great poem. Very moving, just like fine writing should be.

Anonymous said...


That was a breathtaking poem. It was filled with so much powerful words and imagery.

Great work, Jeremy (Sean) and write on!

Unknown said...


Strangely brave, sad and hopeful. The world remains beautiful, expressive, and evocative, despite the passing of our innocence and the punchlines of our claims. I think the comments above are right on... and you earned them with this one.

Jeremy Blomberg said...

thanks for the kind words everyone, i really appreciate them

side note: andy I finally started reading that essay today, and so far it is excellent, thanks for the suggestion.

Kimberly Kaye said...

"I was always the first to forget my promise."

You suckerpunched me in the gut...