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Do you remember

where you put your hands?

Or who you were? Or how,

the first time we met, I liked

that poem, about your brother,

because it was clean like tools in

barber fluid? I’ve heard

a memory sharpens every time

you use it, like outward

inversion, or how

the brunette bitch at your party

returned from the bathroom

each time with a smaller

nose. Like pencil shavings you

collected (age 10) were trash

before you remembered to want

them. If I pressed the wood bits

in your palm, could you recall

the words I gave

your neck? Or how the hard

(apple) press of your mouth

chiseled the past nearly (nearly)

cinnamon and


a. a. reinecke

Pencil Shavings



Alexandra A. Reinecke is a writer and journalist who uses writing as a tool to encourage empathy and affect positive change.

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