It's been way more then a year
since I came in through the door
and saw you standing there;

sometimes, I think of you
as a brother, as a friend
and as something other;

you were probably better then
but my ma tells me it's not your fault —
that addiction you got to that girl heroin;

I can't remember you
when you came to visit
but I wonder if you do;

the funny thing was that
before you came, I had this
stupid(ly short) dream about you;

We were in the basement
I was in the hallway
and you came around the corner;

I remember coming into you arms
I think you smelled of cologne
and then I woke up choking on your name;

it's been way more than two years
since I've seen your face
but if you ever find this know that you're still dear;

maybe you've gotten clean
while working at some burger joint
but I need to tell you something:

I thought of you as a brother
that un-blood true-blood brother
but sometimes I did, sometimes
I thought of you as something other
for the longest hour, I wondered
what it would be like, to think of you
as something other than that
un-blood blood brother
but then I woke up
choking on your name
a name that's like the shirts you wear
(your name is coal)
I'd like to ask you how you are
but you always knew me as that
whiny, hateful, five-years-younger
stupid little brother's sister

It's been maybe two years since then
since the day I saw you last, and I'd like
to ask you if you're still on heroin;

It's been so long and I have trouble
recalling your freckled face,
your lanky limbs,
that cologne you wore
that made me want to hug you
and how low your voice was
and how tall you were.

You probably don't remember me,
but if I were you, I wouldn't either
but for just a second I'd like to see

your face, a smile, maybe to hear from you
because all I've heard from brothers
and sisters mine—

is that you only asked
for twenty bucks
and that's the last they heard of you—

I remember waking up
choking on your name
with my heart stuck in my throat;

I do not think of you
as often as I'd like to
but that's okay

because you're better off
not knowing that I think of you as

that faceless, drug-addicted boy I never met,
that lanky un-blood blood brother I thought I knew,
as a brother,
but more like something other.