The Light Destroys What It Cannot Catch

I put the overhaul in too
and these scattered bits
you called memory’s jar
off the shelf
off the cuff
a lot of words
cut like cloth
they ought only
lie still enough
to not knock us out
from under ourselves

in a single moment
your life has changed
and you are nothing
like you were before
but who will verify you,
who will let you pass?

and aren’t you a stranger
and aren’t your papers forged

and isn’t your ride late
and your destination
a bad place to be right now?

The weight is heavy
from either end
of you
and words won’t quite
do the trick

the thing is
no one can save you
from this
how shattering starts
from the bottom
up / your body’s
constant scar forming
in the night
and sleep itself
unable to hold you.

JAMES DIAZ is the founding editor of the literary arts & music journal Anti-Heroin Chic. His work has appeared most recently in HIV Here & Now, Foliate Oak, Chronogram, and Apricity. His first book of poems, This Someone I Call Stranger, is forthcoming from Indolent Books (2017.) Read other articles by James.