Literature From The Street, For The People





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It Is Unbecoming to Write a Thank-You Card for the Soiled Gift of Sobriety

Nonfiction by Hannah Burns

Finding the syringes and hydrocodone in my father’s sock drawer was not what I remembered about that night. Instead, I remember that it had only been a few months since he had been home from prison. I pulled open a dresser drawer that previously housed my Hello Kitty underwear at some point not too long ago. The dresser was brown, driftwood smooth––the metal hinges rusted away, so it slid on the weathered tracks. The wood scraped together like fire starter, sliding one dry splinter across the other. Open. Shut. Open. Shut. I peeled back a dirty Hanes sock to reveal two orange-capped syringes. Shut. I’m sure there had been sparks of some kind, wood whiskers crinkling underneath the friction, and a rattlesnake bottle of pills. I opened the draw once more in disbelief. But, there they gleamed, almost glowing with possibility––the course of my life measured by its capacity for injection. Shut. Shut. Shut. Sparks, I’m sure, showered down into the t-shirt drawer below. The origins of cigarette holes. I struck the dresser with my pink-nailed fist, mercilessly beating, bludgeoning what contained truth, an inevitable, until I walked away from it––bruised and a secret keeper.

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