sew & prove.

An orange shirt hangs in my closet. My second ever. 
It's got a sheen & a stretch altogether unnatural,
some space-age material that doesn't breathe & doesn't fade.

It's a golf shirt from another era, a stiff broad collar,
more buttons than are necessary, and a deep breast pocket.
There's a duck on the pocket also from another era. 

Summer 1988, north Austin, I'm watching my girlfriend shop
in a fabric store. We were young enough & in love enough
to do everything together then, even things I didn't want. 

I rotated one of those product kiosks, bored & annoyed. 
And there the duck was on a tiny card, a bright impulse
that I knew would make her smile. She sewed it right on

an orange t-shirt I wore probably once a week. Decades after 
we broke up, the shirt lost its snap, and I lost my taste for it. 
I threw away the shirt but kept the duck. I showed it to my wife,

who sewed it right on a new orange shirt. My second ever. 
Here in the closet, in the home we share, a bright sign of
how to adorn a simple thing, of how to keep love near your heart. 

Inspired by the love of two women and by this poem.

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