"Do You Like Yourself?"
by Ace Boggess

—religious pamphlet

No one believes me when I say I’m happy.
Nobody thinks a man could write so much
about his suffering, pain, & loss, &
not blink out of the universe
away from whatever paradise a moment is.
Around me: death, regret, divorce,
plus memories of shock & awe,
the TV’s glittering dust of tower-fall,
twice over. I spent so much time
crossing the yellow stone of prison floors
that I learned to sing as I skipped above them.
I waved the brightest flares in a shadowy room.
Even now, I’m smiling, giddy.
Clumsy fingers squeeze their ache
into my pen. I’m happiest then,
like a dog that doesn’t know its master’s dead.

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