why do we  not see a smile?


we suffocate our selves in

back alleys among urine-tinged

cigarette butts decaying in

blood-laced mud.

a smile forms free and doesn’t hurt

like piercing a weakened vein

why do we not give a hug?


we disapprove of shoes thrown

on the floor covered with playground dirt

worn and torn requiring a

rub and scrub

a hug heals harm and doesn’t hurt

like taunting a haunted child

why do we not sing a song?


we camouflage our joy

in held-back breaths and gasping cries

and grunts and groans suppressing our

hope and love

a song spreads soul and doesn’t hurt

like choking a harbored love