Dear Brother,

I debated putting this up. I really did.

The time has come for me to post my own work. This is something I wrote four- or five-ish years ago, which I still consider one of my greatest accomplishments. I love this poem more than a person should be allowed to love a thing.

In honor of National Siblings Day.

Dear Brother,

Whether you ever decided to be older than me, or younger, I would love you just the same. And even though I’ve never met you, I’ve met a lot of men like you. Or, like you would be. You would have dark hair and bright eyes and this mischievous, demon little smile that would melt the flesh off anyone that ever saw it, leaving them in a pile of muck and bones and a heart fluttering with fibrillations. The smell of blood and latex would melt into your skin and remain there from the day that you were born, leaving you with a feeling like operating rooms and dentistry and needle pricks. People would tell you that you should be a lawyer, or an engineer, or an anthropologist, or get a PhD in art history because certainly you were destined for something greater than this stupid little town with big, bright stars and pine trees and snowstorms.

We would grow up and I would tell you all the time that I thought we should trade names, because Lyndsay, or Lindsay, or Lindsey is a much better name for a boy than it ever was for me. And you would have a name like Caden or Callum or something obscure and pretty that sounded harsh at first but kept a secret lyric hidden underneath its skin. Our mother would pick something out of the dictionary at random if she had to, but you would be her son, and everyone would know it.

But for as much as you would be her son, you would be my brother, and older or younger or somewhere in between knee-high to a grasshopper and falling from the sky, I would love you like I never loved anything else ever. We would spend summers in the grass catching little white butterflies and fireflies and watching birds, because you would always be braver than I could ever hope to be. You would coax me to the tops of trees just to show me that the horizon went on as long as you kept running, and you would chase it to the end of the earth where the sky fell off into the ocean’s waterfalls that ended in forever, a cascade of calla lilies and caladium and chaos. We would fall asleep together because somehow it always feels better to breathe when someone knows the patterns of your exhales like their own private string of A flats and B minors and C naturals and did I mention that I know that you would play guitar. You would be my brother, and for as much as I would hate you for teasing me and trying to play jokes I would give you my left lung if you asked for it. And that’s all you would ever have to do. We would trade secrets like strands of our DNA, things we would never really have to say out loud except to express their importance. We would talk about things like the difference between classical conditioning and string theory and even if I never understood your favorite music, I would buy it for you anyway.

Dear Brother,

I think your favorite color would be purple. Or maybe yellow. Possibly green.

But definitely purple.


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