Creamy Sky

warm
for winter,
like the
November
I was
sent to
that place—

hermetically
sealed—
bad food—
shrinks
that never
listened.

The staff
openly
watched us
and took
notes while
the TV
blared.

After about
five days,
it seemed
almost
normal.

One patient
had stayed
there seventeen
times,

Another
always had
my back,

The gentle
ex-Marine
with bandages
on his wrists
understood why,

The large,
bedraggled
grandmother
pressed my
face to her
breasts as she
cried.

The
bewildered—

the
irretrievable—

too
vulnerable
for shame.

It felt
a crime
to finally
exit
through
those doors—
always
locked,
forbidding
approach.

After a
week of
breathing
stagnant
air, I rode
shotgun
in the car
toward
a home
no longer
mine,

letting
the wind
toss my
hair.

The
hospital
band still
encircled
my wrist—

the name
on it had
disappeared.

With
scissors
I'd stolen
from the
place,

I cut
it off,

held it
tightly
outside the
window,
and,

hesitating,

trying to
decide,

released
my grip

and let
it fly.