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Right Now (A Poem)


It’s nineteen years today since he last held
A drink in his hand or held his breath while smoke
Filled as much of him as he could stand
Till, letting it out, he sought oblivion
Of the trace of memory of anticipation,
And his life fell into a death spiral. Since then
He’s been around folks like him. When he’s been asked,
And sometimes, eager, when he hasn’t been,
He talks to the ones who are not even sure
They want to learn how to stop killing themselves.
That feeling still seems close to him some days.
Right now he’s okay, and that’s enough, right now.

By Kenneth Fields from Classic Rough News. © University of Chicago Press. Reprinted with permission from Kenneth Fields.

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