He Ain’t Nothing But a Shell Game

 

His shells they move back and forth fast and faster slight of hand quick of draw he smiles and confuses and knows that two of the three are empty two of the three are empty two of the three are the ones you will most likely point to and he will flip them up flip them up flip them upside down like drained half walnuts empty empty empty like his chalk outlined soul his mama beat it outta him you can’t blame you and you can’t blame him but this ain’t about blame it’s about get the fuck out before it kills you and the blank socket blind socket of the shell you picked will stare up into your face and you will drop down inside your sternum like a terrified and disappointed trapped woman on a roller coaster and aren’t you aren’t you isn’t that exactly fucking exactly what you are and he’s the captain of that crazy train he’s the motherfucking one who ups you downs you mostly down yes down down down and empty sockets drained walnuts the meat of them carved out and given away to his mama long ago she took his souflesh and left a pretty shell the shell the shell just that illusion baby there’s nothing to him but a game a pea you break yourself to find underneath those shifting magician’s hands you train your eye to follow his every move thinking this time this time this time you’ll figure out how to capture his heart but didn’t you notice didn’t anyone tell you didn’t you realize that a small hard bean of a heart is not a heart at all but a pebble so hard so dry so empty that it will never grow not even if you water it every day with the spout in your eyes just fucking let go

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