How Dare You Be Smoking

when there I am plundering down the sidewalk

in the opposite direction

in groups of one not two

How dare you be smelling like loosened-belt retirement age

and blood-red steak and plans to die at a ripe married stage

of lung cancer, after

your grandchildren have been born to nurse your

leftover soulmate through the ensuing

dementia and death?

As I walk along freezing at nineteen

Hands burning in the boiling ice of thoughts

of long narrow streets with never another passing soul to cross shadows with

of dreams and the way they splatter fifty meters off the top of an office building

walking with myself

And how dare you come along and be

smoking, poisoning the nothingness

exhaling death, textbook disobedience, statistically correct downfall

and death between

all the

right wrong lines

How dare you be

laughing and killing yourself

slowly while the stars of your yet-unpierced dreams

twinkle, undropped,


and wasted

and how dare I be made

to watch you do it?


Image credit: By SuaveKevinKariuki (Own work) [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, via Wikimedia Commons


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