Do you work

with your hands,

he asks me as

swirls and eddies

spill across the

gray screen. My

prints are worn

like the back

side of the penny

I kept in my

pocket for luck.

After school

I sat with my

back pressed

flat against

the side of the

dumpster, the

coin delicate

between my

thumb and

forefinger but

too dull to catch

the sun. Faggot

thinks he can hide:

spit consonants

crackling blue

like flame in the

hard winter

air. Back then

beauty seemed

inseparable from

worth, worth

from -less. Now

I find on each

finger another

small imperfect


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