Alex Patriquin

Marginalia & found poetry. Short fiction and other projects. Musings  on startups. Photos from NYC and travels.

Historic Shirt

Ran into Alyssa and Todd and Alyssa said "I like your shirt"
and I laughed because it's obviously very old and she said
"But it looks so soft and comfortable" and I agreed
and Alyssa said "And that little heart is so sweet"
referring to the red velvet heart sewn on the left shoulder
so I said "There's a lot of history in that" and then had to explain
that my first wife sewed the heart on this shirt
for her boyfriend before me—and Alyssa said
"Wow, that seems symbolic of something!" and Todd laughed
and I said "It probably means that I refuse to let go of
any trace of the past" and Alyssa said "Or maybe it means
you refuse to be oppressed by the past" and I said
"That sounds good" and Todd sort of half smiled and Alyssa said
"You accept the past so it can't then turn around and bite you"
and for a half second this idea sparkled alarmingly in the air
and then we all smiled in order to let the scene end

and Alyssa walked away arm in arm with her new husband
to go on making the life that would be their past together.

"Historic Shirt" by Mark Halliday