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childish habit of listing
by Hezekiah Allen Taylor

"Soap is a tool of peace and a weapon of war."
(Procter and Gamble ad, Saturday Evening Post, 1944)

pigs smell like the holy ghost
and i hate the chickens

a rocking chair moves like
dog claws on linoleum
my parents are talking low outside the door

my brother saves me from headlights on ice

i pretend to ride fred's motorcycle
but i never really learn how

easter egg baskets with green plastic grass
fireworks and black snakes
tree swings with frayed rope
such clichés of childhood
but they are still mine

listening to olivia newton-john
while trying to get my toes to touch the sky
on said swing

my grandpa trying to herd
the kittens for a picture
shows his bald spot
and doesn't smile

one year i'm a rock star for halloween
i make the cardboard guitar myself
sneaking the exacto knife
from my brother's biology kit

age six i'm princess leia
my mother makes the costume from an old
bed sheet, but it isn't white
so i'm covered in green flowers
and yellow leaves
but i believe i'm princess leia anyway

fred ties little firecrackers
to all the doorknobs in the house
one afternoon

Francine's Version -- Hezekiah's Version
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