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Emptying Town

 I want to erase your footprints
from my walls.
Each pillow is thick with your reasons.
Omens fill the sidewalk below my window: a woman in a party hat, clinging to a tin-foil balloon.
Shadows creep slowly across the tar, someone yells, "Stop!" and I close my eyes.
I can't watch as this town slowly empties, leaving me strung between bon-voyages, like so many clothes on a line, the white handkerchief stuck in my throat.
You know the way Jesus rips open his shirt to show us his heart, all flaming and thorny, the way he points to it.
I'm afraid the way I'll miss you will be this obvious.
I have a friend who everyone warns me is dangerous, he hides bloody images of Jesus around my house, for me to find when I come home; Jesus behind the cupboard door, Jesus tucked into the mirror.
He wants to save me but we disagree from what.
My version of hell is someone ripping open his shirt and saying, Look what I did for you.

Poem by Nick Flynn
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