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Winning/Losing at This Numbers Game

Age nine wasn’t fine. It was brutal and stealthily altered the landscape forever

Fourteen removed the cloak from my eyes and I saw the horizon of womanhood

Eighteen. Sweet release into exploratory wonder

A new nation. A new name. New faces. Old pain.

Twenty-one held me up and kept the charade charging for too long

I surrendered to the serenity of lust never-lasting and built the heart around the simmering ashes

Twenty-eight could never hold me down to believe that I wasn’t screwed immeasurably

The promise of what could unfold if the nudges of the past refused to pinch away the proof…

Thirty-three produced the easy/fail of requited love that saves the soul but kills the spirit

Thirty-eight revived the changing tides of plastered endurance, funneled by the recognition that the days ahead will not nurture

Forty-two is the realization that age isn’t just a number.

It’s a catalogue of why we won.

Or how we lost at this terrifyingly involved process

that intensifies as each number increases

and the dependence on tomorrow

decreases.

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