“Impressions” by Patricia Kirsch


Subtract 20 years
I hear the howl
see your shiny smile
your fingers flex with
talent and experience.
"Don't shed one
be a big girl
I love you
don't you know?"

Christmas came
and still no
workout bag
Santa gave him
an excuse instead.

I remember the
final time we punched
in sibling fun
I knew your skin
like the sizzling street
on my feet.

Add 20 years
I still know your fist
I wear it every day
My arm bears its impression.