Carbon Dated

428His factory job – deep in the noise

of industrial diamond saws and

clouds of carbon by product

allowed his family to be consumers.

 

His sense of smell paid

for our 80’s style Saved By The Bell school clothes.

 

His hearing gave me a bed full of stuffed animals

and a pound puppy comforter.

 

His skin tainted so black from the carbon burn

bought us a leather sofa and a yellow second-hand kitchenette set.

 

But he could not rest on the couch.

Mother scolded him for ruining it

with his nuclear bomb blast imprinted outline about his body.

 

But he could not sit his lunch bucket on the table next to the Kool-Aid glass crop circles after a grueling 12 hour shift.

Mother scolded him for ruining it

with the soot that eats away at her Formica shell.

 

He is coated and coating everything with a stain that can not be scoured clean –

Not even with Lava Soap.

Carbon burned into him –

A life of black dirt in his pores

paying for my childhood.

 

He hugs me.

I hug him.

Mother scolds us. She is afraid we are spreading carbon toxins.

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