91718: to the time I held the guitar for three days when you departed.

I wanted to know why the hands

stopped

yearning

for the strings

they were caked

bumps and callous patterns

not the right

kind of progressions

not the desired ones

yet underneath

the stuttering grip

and the delicate-less

fumble of the fretless

here I set beyond the waking hours

with the deepest of needs

before sunrise

why the strumming

why the strumming

why the strumming had to stop.

-j

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