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Nick Flynn - Emptying Town

I want to erase your footprints
from my walls. Each pillow
is thick with your reasons. Omens 

fill the sidewalk below my window: a woman
in a party hat, clinging
to a tin-foil balloon. Shadows 

creep slowly across the tar, someone yells, "Stop!"
and I close my eyes. I can't watch 

as this town slowly empties, leaving me
strung between bon-voyages, like so many clothes
on a line, the white handkerchief 

stuck in my throat. You know the way Jesus 

rips open his shirt
to show us his heart, all flaming and thorny,
the way he points to it. I'm afraid 

the way I'll miss you will be this obvious. 

I have a friend who everyone warns me
is dangerous, he hides
bloody images of Jesus
around my house, for me to find 

when I come home; Jesus
behind the cupboard door, Jesus tucked 

into the mirror. He wants to save me
but we disagree from what. My version of hell
is someone ripping open his shirt 

and saying, Look what I did for you. . .

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Added: Feb 20 2003 | Viewed: 3249 times | Comments and analysis of Emptying Town by Nick Flynn Comments (37)

Emptying Town - Comments and Information

Poet: Nick Flynn
Poem: Emptying Town
Volume: Some Ether
Year: Published/Written in 2000
Poem of the Day: Oct 17 2013

Comment 37 of 37, added on May 30th, 2015 at 5:54 AM.

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Comment 36 of 37, added on August 6th, 2014 at 5:31 AM.

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Comment 35 of 37, added on July 3rd, 2014 at 7:26 PM.

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