Young Shields

this town can only smile at night
lit up on pills, bottles, and tavern bars
black tar seeping through each seam
we young shields spend eternities
trying so hard to be found
that we eventually lose ourselves
like the first crooked whiskers grown
we hold on to love too long
the fear of forlornness, the guillotine overhead

but let’s lose our minds to ignore fate
each night amidst the angled design kids
and the broiled cadets of jersey shore
contorted legs kicking to show verve
tongues hopelessly dripping formaldehyde
young shields, we are transparent, reflecting
some sort of desperate discotheque hope.
an endless barrage of what-could’ve-beens,
don’t-ask-don’t-tell refills, and angry quips

we never forget when we’ve been scorned,
just tally up the points for self-defense
young shields break, crying like aeolian harps
blood steeped to tepid, sharp-tongues eroded
always stark at every single rave
trying so hard to look anything but our age
and when these killer parties get too literal,
it’s time to kick the jams, and leave the scene.

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