Our Twenties

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The way the oat bran blurps
recalls the promises we made
with what we called our souls.

Each bubble like a shade in hell
swells with the steamy air
of what it wishes that it were

before pulling its lips apart
in a disconsolate “Mwa”
and melting back into the meal.

Why do you haunt me – you I
haven’t missed and don’t wish to see
even, especially, after I die?

The way you burst then swell
up from the very belch into which
you were just sucked appalls me.

Yet I realize it’s not just you
(or you, or you, or you)
off-gassing hope with every pop—

but my own soul dying to
rematerialize into what it was
before the oat bran turns to glue.