brian taught in sunset park

brooklyn after college, before the princeton

radicalism birthed its nascent

accountability, before the

cluttered marble halls opened upwards,

brian stood in dirty classrooms and

watched the children mark their way;

outside, a million miles from that

moment war breathed dragons across

an unimaginable place, and the men

smoked outside with shaking hands-

no one here much set for burning,

only a play at building, a place crowded

already with the pressure of history.

brian wrote to the draft board he

was a necessary object, there in

front of his children. like they'd send

a shepherd tending some hopeless

wanton flock, useless attempts in the

sweatshop hierarchy of belonging;

design. he went home to long island,

the open beachfront desolation still

the same, winter now skeletal against

the beach grass and he borrow his

father's handgun, holding it out over

the ocean. east enough, he figured.

later on, he applied to graduate school

and the war went on to its spluttered end,

men still coming home hollow, a country

of hours lost thousands of forevers away

from where brian stood. stands. even now.