Poetry 2011 / Volume 42

Old Coat — William Spencer

The setting is inside an old coat that looks like Camus
in Paris and smells like a dime cigar and the hint of
cheap but adequate wine.

Inside the coat is a person, but more importantly two
shoulders. Just outside the coat are two hands.
The shoulders and hands shake; they don’t have the
endurance for this sort of thing.

The person is trying to pinpoint the exact moment he
became a sinner, but cannot come up with anything.
He realizes he might not be a real sinner at all, but
the realization does nothing for his guilt.

Outside, it may not actually be cold enough for the

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