kids these days pray for cures to opportunity cost

for Malakai

how would their parents react
if they knew what these children were doing at night?

in the hidden safety of rehearsals, of group chats,
of school lunch tables,

they’re swapping names, rearranging the alphabet together,
hypothetically trading limbs and shapes and silhouettes

and wondering what it would take to live
a life that fits, to wear skin like skin and not a costume,

to not have to think twice when someone asks
for your name. oh, to have a name you can wear

like skin and not a costume, in places other than
the hidden safety of rehearsals, of group chats,

of school lunch tables. to live a life that fits
and hoping it won’t take everything.

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