chasing happiness

at seven,

i wished on

a shooting star for

the kind of happiness

that was served

on gleaming golden platters.

instead i found you,

waggy tail, hungry belly

and a predatory snout.

at thirteen,

we wished on

a shooting star

in front of a mansion

that looked colder

than a winter’s night,

holding laughter and

sacred aromas

behind sealed doors;

we wished but

they remained shut

and nobody

slipped us the password;

instead,

we got cold pizza

from the

red-capped delivery boy

you bared your teeth at.

at twenty,

we found a home

in the woods and

you brought friends over;

and I decided

to give that golden platter happiness

another shot at me;

So I wished and wished

and wished away

all those fantasies

of the most basic

kind of warmth,

the kind that

one supposedly finds

in the embrace of a mother,

upon that shooting star.

two years after,

i put you six feet under

beneath the naked, lying stars;

your comrades

howled away your loss

and avenged you;

the village was a

portrait of massacred flesh

smeared everywhere

ruined by the ugly tint

of human unkindness;

the same unkindness

that shape-shifted

into the early sparks

of a forest fire

that claimed your hunted bones

and that of your comrades.

that night,

the stars wept

from my chest;

their tears

rolled down my cheeks.

but soon,

the new century dawned;

i wished no more

on shooting stars;

they imported laws

from creative minds

that spoke of you gently,

promising that you

and your comrades

would be safe,

concealed from

the ugly tint that

my friends and I carried.

but they lied;

at ninety,

i prayed

upon a shooting star

to take care of you,

to rid my kind

from your lands

so you can

race the winds

and be at peace;

and before

the star disappeared

from my sight forever,

my eyes closed

and i saw you;

you smiled at me.

and i found my

golden plattered happiness

as i returned it;

and then i

drew in a breath,

my last;

and we took off

together

and chased all the winds

that we could.

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